I have this little daughter Lily. She is small and very funny. Lily has an imaginary dog called Beaky that no one else can see. She drew a picture of him here:
[Owing to errors in a previous post, I now cannot remember whether Beaky features to the right of the tiger, or on the right hand side of the tiger. I suspect Beaky is the one on the left.]
One day Lily said ‘Beaky died on his birthday’ and we asked how. ‘Beaky had a party and he died and now I have a new dog called Chadderly’.
‘Chadderly?’ we asked. ‘Chadderly? As in Chudleigh?’
‘No’ explained Lily, ‘Chadderly, from the London Advent Calendar‘.
‘Chudleigh from the London Advent Calendar?’
This did not make enough sense to us, so we asked about Chadderly. What did he look like?
‘Chadderly is the colour when you mix your ice cream.’
‘Do you mean when you mix chocolate and vanilla?’
Lily then had to tell Beaky and Chadderly off for jumping on the furniture, despite neither of them existing and one having apparently passed away, which brought that conversation to an end.
The next time we visited Grandma and Grandad’s house Lily wanted to see Chadderly on their London Advent Calendar. It is not putting it too strongly to say that Lily is obsessed with the London Advent Calendar. She can tell you what most of the dates do and every day of the month she reminds you of the equivalent last December. The London Eye is the 3rd. The Restaurant with the scary silhouettes is on the 5th and therefore will be ok to watch when she is 5. Big Ben is on the 1st. The Three Boats Come Sailing In is on the 6th. There are a number of others, as you might imagine. Lily makes up songs about it. She talks about the animals. She tells stories about them. She has decided that her teddy Archie will go to the St Paul’s Cathedral school and church (17th). She looks forward to going to Grandma and Grandad’s house mainly to play with their London Advent Calendar.
Here she was at Christmas getting a big fix, in my absence.
Except there was a problem.
You see, Chudleigh (ahem, Chadderly), looks like this:
I don’t know when you last mixed chocolate and vanilla ice cream, but I recommend it. It does not, however, come out black.
The Real dog Lily had in mind was this one:
This is Bertie. So, goodbye Chadderly and goodbye Beaky. We will not ever never forget you. And welcome to the madhouse Bertie from the London Advent Calendar.