Ben, Lep and Nessie: How to add some fantasy to your lives!

Another three weeks of lockdown, many Brits (just like lots of other people all around the world) are moaning right now – well, time then for making our life behind closed doors a little more different, a little more exciting, a little… crazier even, if we haven’t done so yet!

Remember when you used to talk to your dolls or teddy bears or even balls or building blocks when you were kids, dear friends? And why did you stop – because you grew up and wanted to be serious? And has life since maybe got a bit TOO serious, a bit dull sometimes? So why not start again now, in these very serious and depressing days – there are few things we need more right now than a bit of sunshine in our lives that we can produce ourselves at home.

I’ve told you before about our little Celtic friends, Ben Dragon from Wales, Lep Re Chaun from Ireland and Nessie McNess from Scotland (and you probably thought me and my darling Ian were completely bonkers); we brought them back from our Celtic holidays over the last two years, and they’ve become our constant companions.

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Their place is right here on our living room table, where they eat, drink and watch TV with us; we talk to them and they talk to each other – really! Well, when my darling husband and me make them, of course… All it takes is a bit of imagination, and you’ve got some company in the loneliness and dullness of lockdown.

Being genuine Celts, they love their drink, of course – especially the two Gaels, Lep and Nessie. But Brythonic Ben likes a drop or two as well, like on Saint Patrick’s Day last month!

They’ve been trying to help me learn their languages, too, in addition to my lessons on Duolingo; but I must confess that while I’m making reasonable progress in Welsh, both Irish and Scottish Gaelic are just fiendishly difficult…

(Check out Duolingo if you’re interested in learning a new language – it’s a great way of passing the time and doing something useful!)

And they love their rugby, too, just like me: every year when the Six Nations Cup is on (which never finished this year due to the pandemic…), we gather in front of the TV set and cheer for Wales, Ireland and Scotland!

They’ve got other company their size in the flat as well; Ian and me love collecting cute little cuddly toys! There’s Paddington, of course, from faraway Peru, who’s become their pal, and Paddy and Dolly who came with Lep from Ireland – Ben has got to keep an eye on their drinking, though, because sometimes their drinking and dancing sessions get a bit out of hand…

Our three little mascots travel with us wherever we go (or rather used to go before Coronavirus); they felt at home in Piraeus immediately when we went back there to visit my parents and Marianna, even though there was a little accident with Jimmy the Panther who mistook Lep for a snack… And, of course, ouzo will do just as well for Lep as whisky!

Now that we have to stay in, they go about their hobbies; Nessie loves swimming, for example, and Ben and Lep love watching her from above! They’ve also got into the good old board games, like Scrabble, to pass the time…

So, don’t be afraid of being a little crazy these days, friends – strangely enough, it helps us a lot in keeping our sanity while being bombarded with all those dreadful Coronavirus news! Imagination is a wonderful thing, it can make us feel like children again and look at the world in a different way. I’m sure you’ll find some old teddy bear or doll in a long forgotten chest, or you can start talking to your Victorian porcelain figures, or even your coffee pot, imagining there was a dormouse living in it…

Have fun, dear friends, and keep safe and sane – but with a healthy touch of insanity!

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