Call the Midwife s10e00 Episode Script

Christmas Special

1 Older Jenny: All doors are opened at Christmas.
All desires are made known.
Children list them in their letters.
Those older just make lists.
That one.
That one.
Older Jenny: There is always a goal to be reached, a gift to be given, something to seek out or to purchase or pursue.
Women: Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness and put upon us the armor of light now in the time of this mortal life [Click.]
Older Jenny: We want so much.
We hope for so much happiness Woman: Looking good, Fred! Sparkling.
Older Jenny: And there are things that we must always do.
We need more "beanos.
" The "beano" is better than the "dandy.
" Oh, well, you write that on your list, because you are the comic advisor.
[Door bell jingles.]
Fred: Ohh Any more thoughts about the turkeys? This is a high-class news agents and tobacconist, Fred Buckle, not a general stores with a sideline dealing dodgy poultry.
But the turkeys ain't dodgy.
I'm getting them from a farmer in the countryside.
Nothing of uncertain provenance is coming through that door.
You can flog them out of the back of your Van if you so desire.
Close the door, Reggie love.
It's nippy out there.
[Door closes.]
There's a polar bear.
How about that then, Reg? The circus is coming! With a polar bear! Excuse me, gentlemen.
Is there going to be a parade? Will it be passing by my shop, and when? Is everything all right in there? Is something amiss? The bathroom's been occupied for absolutely ages.
It's either Lucille or Sister Monica Joan.
No, Sister Monica Joan went straight to the parlor after chapel.
She's waiting for "Dr.
Who" to start.
Lucille! Is it a touch of dicky tum? I've seen a few cases of the trots on the district rounds.
Lucille: I haven't got the trots! [Sniffs.]
I've had a new hairdo, and I don't like it.
By the time Trixie's given it the once-over with Valerie's teasing comb, and a squirt of lacquer, Cyril will be eating out of your hand.
I've seen this time and time again with a revised bouffant.
Trauma, followed by tears, followed by a dawning conviction that one had never looked better.
Trixie: Where are Valerie's things? She's only gone to the maternity home.
Why on Earth would she take her heated rollers there? Sister Julienne: Nurse dyer begged for my discretion and, indeed, my silence.
She came to me in considerable distress soon after her grandmother had passed away, asking to hand in her resignation.
Nurse Crane: But the poor lass has had one heartbreak after the other.
She wasn't in a frame of mind to make any sort of decision.
Sister Julienne: She was not, and I told her exactly that.
And where is she now? At London airport.
Sister Hilda: Well, she did rather look as though a holiday might perk her up.
Sister Julienne: She refused leave of absence, insisting that she needed to keep busy, so I have arranged for her to go to hope clinic in South Africa.
Sister Monica Joan: In that case, she has not left us.
She has merely been transposed to another of our spheres.
How long is she gone for? There's no way of telling.
I did not press for any sort of promise.
Well perhaps she'll come back when she runs out of hair lacquer.
Lucille: Why would she do that, Cyril? Why would she just pack up her home, her job, her whole life and go running away halfway across the world? We did it.
We said good-bye to people.
We tell them what was being planned.
Did Valerie have no love for anyone? Did she not know what her running off would do? I think she did and she was afraid of causing pain.
People who are hurting like that, they lash out or they hide away.
Valerie is my friend.
She mean a hundred things to a hundred people, not just me.
She would have liked my new hairdo.
What new hair? I think it's very fine indeed.
[Bell ringing.]
[Door opens.]
Uhh! Nurse Crane: You might only see a hemorrhage like this once every Preston guild, but you certainly won't forget it in a hurry.
[Water sloshing in bucket.]
Meanwhile, Mrs.
Turner's just arrived with a cake tin.
[Door opens.]
Oh, Dr.
Turner, the very gentleman.
It's all well and good, the flying squad racing in through those doors, but when they race out again without the mother's notes, it's slightly less impressive.
Now, if you need my assistance, my price is a mince pie.
Shelagh: I've done a dozen with flaky pastry tops, as an experiment.
And I'll take the notes to St.
Cuthbert's maternity by hand.
Come on, Teddy.
Shelagh: And if you could make it clear that the oversight was on the part of the ambulance crew, I'd be grateful.
Thank you.
Excuse me.
It's Gloria.
Gloria Venables.
We were in here together when you were having this little fellow, I think? Oh, Gloria! You remember Shelagh, don't you, Tony? We were in here together when, um, well, when we both had problems.
Nice to see you.
I always wondered how you got on.
Oh, well, not too well at first.
I lost that one, as you know, and then 3 more.
I'm so sorry.
Don't be.
I'm 38 weeks.
Did you have cervical cerclage, Gloria? They took the stitch out last Friday.
I'm just here for a check up, and then I'll be back when I go into labor.
Do you remember what you told me when we said good-bye? "Next year or the year after that " Gloria: " it'll be a lovely sunny day and I'll be down the market, pushing a pram.
And somewhere near the flower stall I'll look up and see you.
" Pushing a pram.
"And we'll smile at each other and pass the time of day.
" We've managed almost all of it, except perhaps the sunshine and the flowers.
Good luck, Gloria.
So, we managed to steal a march on mother nature by putting in that stitch.
Now it's time to let Mother Nature call the shots.
Gloria: What if something goes wrong? Doctor: Goes wrong in what way? Tony: Well, when it's being born or after it's been born.
It's taken us a long time to get to this point.
Man: And at this point, your wife is just the same as any other mother.
She's carried an apparently healthy baby to term.
And just like any other mother, she simply has to go home and think beautiful thoughts until her time comes.
Gloria: I can't think beautiful thoughts, Mr.
I can only think of terrible, terrifying things.
I really do urge you to take her home, Father.
When the day arrives, you bring her back here, hand her over, job done.
What does he mean hand me over, job done? I'll only just be starting.
Look We'll manage, I promise you.
No, you can't promise me anything, and I don't know any of those midwives.
I haven't seen the same one twice.
[Bell ringing.]
Gentlemen, gentlemen, have a quality street.
Fred: Oh, here they come! Here they come! Oh! Here they are! [Circus music playing.]
Man: Roll up and book your tickets for the Christmas show! Ha ha ha! Man: Get your tickets now! [Dog barking.]
[Horn honks.]
Where's the polar bear? [Whip cracks.]
You can't put a price on showmanship.
What are you doing stuck back there? You're missing all the details.
I'm not keen on clowns.
[Horn honks.]
Hey hey! Oh I hope we aren't going to regret switching over to these Lloyd George cards.
They don't seem to be particularly capacious.
We have a lot of chronic invalids on our books, not to mention some noteworthy hypochondriacs.
I recommend a single stout elastic band for the chronic invalids, two for the hypochondriacs.
[Door opens.]
Tony: Mrs.
Gloria, whatever's the matter? Dr.
Turner: The thing is, if you decide to transfer to our practice, you can also switch your ante-natal care away from St.
Cuthbert's and be looked after by our midwives.
Shelagh: You may still be advised to choose hospital delivery, but we'd care for you and the baby once you come home, too.
Well, that would be better, wouldn't it? Oh, much better.
Turner: Well, we always say, the best care for any mother is the care she believes in.
And you've had so many losses, it's no wonder your faith has been shaken.
Gloria: Ah, I never got further than 6 months before, and they were all born too soon to breathe.
Kenley said it better not to think of them as babies.
Gloria: I don't like to talk about it.
[Dog barking.]
[Door bursts open.]
[Collar jingling.]
I'm afraid animals are not permitted on these premises for reasons of hygiene and peace of mind.
Armande is a professional entertainer.
You can't treat him as if he were just livestock.
Perhaps one of your children could remove him from the premises, since you appear to have several.
Woman: Only two of them are mine.
Oh, 3, if you count this one.
[Armande barking.]
[Bicycle bell dings.]
Sister Monica Joan: It is not centrally affixed.
I have an unerring eye for median position.
Kindly oblige me, Sister, and descend.
Sister Monica Joan, you are not going up that ladder.
Sister Frances, it looks perfectly fine to me.
[Doorbell rings.]
[Running footsteps.]
I'll get it! It'll be the postman.
Postman: Here you go, miss.
Thank you! A Portofino postmark.
Ah! And every year, I pause to remind myself, 'cause I love my godmother dearly for who she is, and the lovely experiences we've shared, and not just because she sends me a dress allowance every Christmas! [Trixie gasps.]
Trixie, have you had bad news? She hasn't sent me a dress allowance.
She's paid for me to join a marriage bureau so that I don't end up and I quote "on the shelf.
" We have delivered babies in caravans before, Mrs.
How long is the circus going to be here? Well we're meant to be heading to Paris in the new year.
It may well end up with France on its passport as its place of birth.
Were you born somewhere exotic? Scunthorpe.
Well, that might be paradise, as far as I know.
My dad never took the circus back there again.
My mother died when she was having me.
Oh, no.
I'm sorry.
My dad goes into a panic every time I fall pregnant, in case the same thing happens to me.
But you are doing very well.
You can assure him of that.
I do.
And you've quite a trim tummy, I have to say! Well, I was doing 10 shows a week up until two months ago.
I'm an aerialist.
I spend half my life on a trapeze.
I shall be vexed if I hear of you going anywhere near a trapeze until well after baby has arrived.
Oh, you never know.
Might shake something loose.
You're not on the shelf, Trixie.
You're just choosy.
Or men have been choosy.
It's not necessarily your fault.
Trixie: My godmother's implying that it is my fault.
She's simply implying that you need to take a fresh approach.
Some of us, when faced with an obstacle in life, make prayer our primary port of call.
Others go to a rather smart agency in Mayfair and ask to be introduced to some nice chaps! [Sets teacup on table.]
She's written me off as a failure without taking into account any of my professional accomplishments or my personal achievements! Do you know what she did for a living? Croupier? She was a hand model! She used to hold bottles of hand cream and washing up liquid in advertisements! Sister Hilda: I'm opening the petticoat tails.
I suspect we may need two each.
We can't eat the petticoat tails.
They've been put away for Christmas.
Plll! Sister Monica Joan! We're about to have some tea and shortbread! Lucille: Sister Monica Joan! Ohh! [Thud.]
Sister Monica Joan: Ohh! Uhh! [Crying.]
Ohh! Ohh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Ohh! Oh Oh! Oh! Sister, how did you fall? [Sister Monica Joan groaning.]
Did you lose consciousness? I only know I don't know! [Groaning.]
We need pillows and a blanket and an ambulance! I'm glad we went for the Navy.
It's much smarter.
And with those new specs, no one can say that you don't look the part.
You mean like a shopkeeper? We need to be on a much firmer footing before we can take on an assistant.
Besides, you need to get to know the paper trade.
We sold 3 "beanos" yesterday.
Oh! Now, you should take a leaf out of Reggie's book.
I'd rather be at a circus.
I really want to see the polar bear.
Violet: Oh, now it's a busy time of year in the frozen waste, Reggie.
That bear is gonna be run off his feet, same as me.
I better get back round the corner because the elastic salesman is coming at half-past.
[Door bell jingles.]
The minute that clock hits dinnertime, we are going down to the big top to see if they need any papers delivered.
And I believe the appropriate term for such an exercise is "market research.
" Sister Monica Joan: No! I require no assistance.
We'll have to lift her.
I'm sorry.
We cannot rule out the possibility of a broken hip.
The patient can only be moved with the greatest of care.
Sister, I think there might be a Thomas' splint in the storeroom.
Sister Frances: I've brought the gas.
Come on, Sister.
I'll show you what to do.
Sister Monica Joan: Ohh! I will not leave her.
Only God knows what He has now begun or where He might end it.
I'm going to see a tiger.
Good afternoon, gentlemen.
Ellings: Watch where you're walking, sweetheart.
The horses have just come past.
Can I help you? Fred Buckle of the Buckle's newsagent and tobacconist, Wick Street.
I'm Jacquetta Percival.
Ellings is my married name, but this is our family business.
Fred: Well, my young colleague and I were wondering if you might be in need of a daily delivery.
Not half! I'll have the "Mirror" and 20 "Henley" tipped, Monday to Saturday and the "news of the world" on a Sunday morning.
No one ever delivers to caravan dwellers! We aim to please, don't we, Reggie? Hope you're gonna come and see the show.
Where's the polar bear? Oh.
Oh, he's not been well.
He's gone to a convalescent home in the North Pole till he feels better.
- Oh.
- Tell you what Why don't I ask the ringmaster if he'll sign a souvenir photo? And you can help me feed the horses, if you like.
Fred: Would you like that, Reggie? Jacquetta: Follow me.
Oh, Dad! Dad.
I would not object to being served tea.
You aren't permitted anything in case they decide that you need an operation.
I've already spoken to the doctor about your x-rays.
It is an unnatural business to have one's inner framework exposed to the casual observer.
The soul itself might be made visible.
He made no mention of any spiritual discovery.
He did say that your hips were both intact, which is miraculous in someone of your age.
You speak of me as though I am an ancient crone who cannot expect to survive a simple stumble down the stairs! But you have sustained a nasty double fracture of the lower leg and broken both your tibia and your fibula.
You will not, I fear, be home in time for Christmas or any time soon thereafter.
Jacquetta: That's right.
Keep your fingers straight so that Titania doesn't get them mixed up with the carrots.
Have you ever looked after horses? I've looked after a donkey.
Boys, why don't you take Reggie round the back and show him Pablo? He does tricks.
You'll love him.
Boys: Come on, Reggie.
Come on.
[Sweeping broken glass.]
I have nothing but compassion for your pain and your incapacitation, but after 60 years in the religious life, you're well-practiced in forbearance.
You must draw upon that strength.
Or as my nanny used to say, "what cannot be cured must be endured.
" And age cannot be cured.
It mauls and withers one.
It rubs one out, day after day, like an Indian rubber on a faded pencil sketch.
We are supposed to tolerate it, and I cannot.
I'm tolerating it.
You are younger than me in every facet of existence.
That does not mean that I am young.
I work, too, and it exhausts me.
I have people to serve, and it humbles me.
I have Nonnatus House to save, and it scares me.
What can I do to lighten your burden, Sister? Pray.
Pray that money can be found.
Pray that the council will relent.
Pray that this time next year, we are still in poplar and not putting up the shutters at Nonnatus House.
How, pray, can I pray here in this den of din and disinfectant? [Broken glass clinking.]
[Talking and laughing indistinctly.]
Fred: Thanks for this, Mr.
What's your lad's name? Reggie.
If you could sign it "from Snowy" as well, we'd be over the moon! You are aware that Snowy isn't really at a convalescent home in Greenland? I had an educated guess.
I keep him up there, second shelf down, a bit of him anyway, between the Whitaker's almanac and the Russian dictionary.
I'd have put him in an urn, but the public are more observant than you give them credit for.
And here, he can still be in the midst of it.
Snowy was never a backroom sort of act.
[Shouting and screaming.]
Man: What was that? Man: Fire! [Shouting.]
[Horse nickers.]
Man: Gas canister exploded.
It's by the caravans! Evacuate the stables! [Horse nickers.]
Reggie? Reggie? Reggie? Has anyone seen my boy? Reggie? Reggie! You can't go any further! We can't do nothing.
Do you hear me? They're ours, Kelvin, they're ours! Where are the boys? Nicky! Paul! Fred: Reggie! Jacquetta: Nicky! Kelvin: Where are you? Reggie? Jacquetta: Boys! Paul! Jacquetta: Nicky! Reggie! [Horse nickers.]
Oh! I told them "stay calm.
" Fred: Oh, Reggie! I told them it would be all right.
And it is all right, Reg.
It is.
Fred: Well done.
You missed grace, Nurse Franklin.
As it happens, I missed it because I was taking your advice.
I telephoned the marriage bureau and spoke to a lady called Miss Bathurst and asked to be introduced to some nice chaps.
Well, that's a bit of an about turn.
Well, I decided it was the best chance of restoring some normality to our lives.
There's nothing normal about asking a strange woman to help you get acquainted with strange men.
Lucille, everything is relative.
Nonnatus has barely escaped the ax.
Valerie's in South Africa, Sister Monica Joan's in hospital, and Christmas dinner looks set to be a washout.
That's not true.
Sister Hilda and I are organizing it.
I've been doing the invitations on my stencil set.
We shall be having 3 courses, cheese and biscuits, and the Turner children, for those who deem little faces around the table to be a vital part of the proceedings.
Nevertheless, if I don't go through with this dating game, I will not get my dress allowance.
And if I have nothing to wear, it really will be the end of the world as we know it.
[Door bursts open.]
Woman: Move it! Come on! [Laughing.]
You can bunk down in the cab of the truck, Kel.
Us 3 will do smashing in here.
I don't hold with theatrical types in the general way.
They keep strange hours and leave greasepaint on me pillowslips.
She takes her grease paint off with cold cream, and we pay cash.
Hot water's on between 5:00 and 7:00, and it's extra for the dog! Mr.
Percival, coughing: Is she in here? Is she all right? I'm more all right than you.
My daughter needs looking at by a medical professional.
Well, cough, Reggie.
Sounds clear enough, which is a miracle.
Reggie was a hero today.
Yeah, only because you took him somewhere dangerous.
He could have come to no end of grief.
Well, he can come to grief anywhere.
Look at poor Sister Monica Joan.
I've got her a lovely bundle of magazines, including "the people's friend.
" Reggie: She'd rather have a Mars bar.
[Fred and Violet chuckle.]
Fred: Hey, Reggie, would you rather have a Mars bar or This.
Violet: What's that? Respect.
Reggie did a man's job today.
He can have a man's drink on me.
Man: Good one.
Ha ha! [Deep coughing.]
[Kids laughing.]
Everything's exactly as it ought to be, in spite of this afternoon's adventures.
Can you tell my dad that? If that's him I can hear coughing, I shall be telling him to book in at the surgery.
It's the smoke or the smoking.
Now back under those covers, please.
You've had a day and a half of it.
You need rest.
Well, I always need rest, Nurse.
Gotta get things straight.
We lost everything we had in that caravan.
And what I've grabbed from the store makes no sense.
The boys are dressed like Cherokee Indians, and all I've got is this selection of costumes, none of which I can currently get my leg in.
Can I see? You can see if they're fit to cut down to baby clothes.
Just look at that.
I could make out I'm admiring the workmanship.
Ha ha ha! There's something about these sequins that gives me goosebumps.
That's all in a day's work, as far as I'm concerned.
Always has been.
You left your bag in the clinical room.
Are you gonna meet a matchmaker or running away from home? I should never have said I'd be at Mayfair by 4:30.
It means I have to go straight from clinic, wearing an outfit that represents my personality.
Why don't you wear your uniform? I hardly think boiled washable cotton and a 3-ply cardie sum up the essential moi, Lucille.
I don't want you going in black.
You're looking for love, not attending your own funeral! Good afternoon, ladies.
Until further notice, I'd like you to keep all the St.
Cuthbert's ladies logged and monitored via a separate desk.
Is there a reason for that? I'm conducting a review.
I also want every mother to fill in one of these questionnaires, which Mrs.
Turner has typed up and printed off on the Roneo.
This must have occurred prior to my arrival at the surgery this morning.
I popped by and did it last night, as requested by Sister Julienne.
"Are you satisfied with the care "you are receiving from this clinic? "1 - extremely, 2 - fairly, 3 - no.
" I've also been asked to place a suggestions box in a prominent position.
Suggestions box.
The phrase that springs to mind is "never kick a hornet's nest.
" Hello, doctor.
You've come to see my dad.
I'm under orders from Nurse Crane.
Percival: I have not sanctioned this! I did not send for you, and I do not require your services.
I've got a circus to get back on its feet after a fire! Yeah.
And I am in excellent health.
And you are also being extremely rude.
I can only apologize, doctor.
If he were one of my boys, I'd give him a clip round the ear.
I do understand you're busy, Mr.
I'm on a tight schedule myself.
And if you barged into one of my clinics in a top hat banging a drum, I can't say that I'd roll out the red carpet.
So how about we put your daughter's mind at rest, then we can both get on with our day? I'll do that.
Hello, Reggie.
Every living creature has the capacity to entertain.
All that's required is the ability to do something unexpected.
There's more to everything alive than meets the eye.
Isn't there? I don't know how you're doing this.
Doing what? Managing to keep on working with only one functioning lung and another that's slowly filling up with fluid, not to mention the side effects of the radiation treatment.
I manage so my daughter doesn't have to know.
How can you tell about the radiation treatment? I can see the burns across your back, and I've diagnosed enough lung cancer in my time.
There's something here now.
An enlarged lymph node.
It generally means that the cancer is starting to spread.
Have you any idea how long I've got? I would rather talk about the quality of the life that remains to you.
Over the next few months, I can arrange for oxygen straightaway along with pain relief.
And there's a procedure you can have which will drain this liquid off and make you much more comfortable.
No operations.
No staying in hospital overnight.
Even I couldn't fit my way around that.
You know the best thing you can do, even now? Give up smoking.
We're sponsored by a cigarette firm.
We all smoke.
I make them smoke.
Not that the clowns need much persuading.
[Deep coughing.]
How have you managed to keep this from your daughter? When I go for treatment, I tell her I'm out researching new acts.
[Birds chirping.]
That's how I ended up with these budgies.
And they're hopeless.
[Baby crying.]
Nurse Crane: Mrs.
Meadows! That reading's up, isn't it? Shelagh: Only a little, and I think that's probably because you're feeling anxious.
When I was having Teddy, I couldn't sit still.
I once wrote a list of things to do on a relaxation leaflet.
What sort of things? Buy nappies.
Wash nappies.
Dry, air, fold, and put away nappies.
Buy feeding brassiere.
Buy baby soap.
Buy baby hairbrush.
Clean pram.
Oh, you know the sort of thing, I'm sure.
I'm not sure I do.
Oh, Gloria.
Are you telling me you've made no preparations for this baby at all? I prepared for the first one and the second.
I ended up selling everything through the small ads.
People would come to the house to collect things.
The woman who came for the pram, she already had a baby in her arms.
I don't want to talk about it.
You don't have to.
You're in our arms now, Gloria.
And by Christmas, you'll be holding a baby of your own.
[Dog barking.]
[Horse nickers.]
You ought to begetting home.
You only came to drop my paper and my fags off.
I'll come back tomorrow.
If you want to.
I'll have a show to show you soon.
And Snowy might come back? He may well do.
Ha ha! Woman: Ah! And daddy was a bank manager.
City or provincial? He was mostly posted to the London outskirts.
Twickenham, principally.
So, to summarize, I am most favorably impressed with your dress sense, diction, poise, silhouette, and general sense of polish.
I do have certain reservations regarding your address and your profession.
Would potential suitors object to my living in Poplar? They may be bemused by you living in a convent, especially as you object to drinking alcohol.
I object to being expected to drink alcohol.
That isn't quite the same.
And if a gentleman isn't content to meet over tea and smoked salmon sandwiches, then I'm afraid I don't consider him to be a gentleman, and therefore, he shouldn't be on your books.
Sign here.
We will see what we can do.
[Clicks pen.]
Lucille? You usually call me Nurse Anderson when I'm in my uniform.
Are you on an urgent call? Only a routine district round.
Our church is going to be closed down.
Lucille: Mrs.
Theodore's been wanting to go live with her son in Dudley for some time.
But the church only takes place in her house.
Her house isn't the church itself.
Not one person in our whole congregation has anything more than a single room or a tiny, shared flat to live in.
We have nowhere to go and nowhere to grow either.
It hurts because some of our congregation have been here years, and worship in a rented house is all they have.
And they call me pastor.
It's only a courtesy title, but They mean it, Cyril.
Just as you mean it when you preach.
What if I can't do it, Lucille? What if I can't lead them to a better place? You used to think you couldn't preach, but a way opened up from your heart to that mouth of yours.
A way will open up for this, too, if the Almighty intends it.
I wish I could send you to ask the Almighty what he's planning.
You'll get it straight out of him.
That's what you think of me, is it? Bossy like a grandma? Maybe.
Maybe just bossy like a nurse.
You know what this nurse says? Hmm? Next wage packet you get, you buy yourself a pair of gloves.
You're in England now.
I don't want you turning up on my district round with frostbite.
Man: Get your roasted chestnuts here! Man: How much for a bag? [People talking indistinctly.]
Buckle has agreed to stay open later.
Will it just be us? Just us, Mrs.
Buckle, and this list.
Violet: I think you'll do best if I order you a dd Feeding-wise.
White or carnation beige? I'll go for carnation beige.
Shelagh: I'd suggest 6 of these little vests.
The interlock type will be best for a winter baby.
Will 6 be enough? Well, some mothers do go for the full dozen.
6, with 2 dozen napkins, 3 pairs of plastic pants, and 6 of the brushed cotton nighties.
That's sleepwear and the underneaths completely taken care of.
Must we get everything all at once? Shelagh: No, of course we don't.
We've got quite a lot done for one day.
It's all so real all of a sudden.
Nurse Crane: I'm glad you accepted the invitation to Christmas dinner at Nonnatus.
Oh, I'm sure it will be most congenial, as long as the meal itself doesn't challenge my digestion.
There's always a proper family atmosphere around the table, I grant you, but the smell of turkey grease does cling to the proceedings.
Even my individual nut roast takes on a tang of the farmyard.
I shall bring liver salts and remind myself that were I not there, I'd be spending the day alone after attending morning service at my spiritualist church.
Oh, it does rather leach any glister from the day waiting for ghosts to come through from the other side.
Do you know what I dread, above and beyond any item on the menu, that sense that I'm the maiden aunt perched on a chair with a glass of Sherry only invited out of kindness.
Indeed, and feigning delight when presented with another box of bath cubes.
Oh, I could have built the great wall of China out of bath cubes! Ha ha ha ha! Go on, Millicent.
If you could have anything you fancied for your Christmas dinner, what would it be? I hardly dare tell you.
It's almost too disgraceful! If I had my way, I'd have a nice plain plate of baked beans on toast and a milk stout in a lady's glass.
I wouldn't have a savory course at all.
I'd go straight to the sweet, and it would be a simply enormous bowl of trifle washed down with a Harvey wall banger.
A Harvey what? It's an orange-colored cocktail that tastes somewhat of anise seed, generally embellished with a small umbrella.
In 1926, I had one at a Charleston contest.
It's lingered in my memory ever since.
"Leopold Morries, 58.
Retired actuarial scientist.
"A strong interest in Victorian taxidermy.
"Moderate pulmonary problems, which are well-controlled by medication in the main.
" I shudder to think what decrepitude those last 3 syllables imply.
Do you have any advice to offer, Cyril? Hmm? Uh, I think you are a good-looking lady.
You'll be a fool to tie yourself down to an old man who'd rather look at dead animals than take you dancing.
Ha ha! I think we should just draw a line under anyone called Leopold.
This one is called John.
He is a recently widowed teacher with 3 little girls.
He isn't looking for romance.
He's looking for a nanny.
Sister Hilda, we're meant to be working on the Christmas dinner plans.
Indeed we are.
Item number 6 on the agenda pudding for the Turner children, marshmallow snowmen the Turners aren't coming.
Sister Hilda: What? Mrs.
Turner telephoned.
- [Telephone ringing.]
- Sister Hilda: But we'll have more empty chairs around the festive board than people! Trixie: I refer you to my earlier remarks about a washout.
Oh! [Ring.]
This is Nonnatus House.
I am afraid that I'm not a midwife.
What fresh cataclysm has befallen that you are deployed as a telephonist? Sister Monica Joan, you haven't managed to escape yet? The infirmary authorities have conspired against me.
I thought Sister Julienne was coming to visit you this evening.
She has departed, leaving little in her wake except a mound of indifferent grapes and a conversational desert.
Cyril: How about Lucille and I come and see you and bring some tangerines and a bit of black bun? Sister Monica Joan: If you so wish.
I have no objection, but I advise that you attend forthwith, for I intend to be discharged by Christmas.
Say good-bye, Sister.
We've a procedure to attend to.
[Footsteps approaching.]
[Hangs up receiver.]
What you doing with the telephone? Nobody else was going to answer it, and it was Sister Monica Joan.
[Telephone rings.]
Nonnatus House.
You are speaking to a midwife.
Kelvin: Can somebody come out and look at my wife? She's upstairs at the Black Sail pub.
And tell them to bring extra newspaper.
It's a brand-new mattress.
Timothy and I used to love having our Christmas dinner at Nonnatus House.
They'd always let me carry the pudding in.
Timothy: It would be nice to go again, though.
Sort of for old times' sake.
We need to be doing things for new time's sake, Timothy, to honor the family we've created and the life we have now.
Besides, there was so much upset with May's mother last summer, it would be good to remind her how secure things are.
Two bicycles, all wrapped up and ready to send to Father Christmas.
Angela: Mummy, can I come for a drink of water? Stay where you are.
Shelagh: Mummy's going to bring you one up.
I don't like the look of the turkeys at the butcher's.
We'll order ours from Fred Buckle.
[Armande barks.]
[Boy growls.]
Flo: It isn't just any old mattress.
It's fully box sprung.
"Church Times," "Financial Times," "tit-bits.
" Nothing but the best.
Percival: We are not leaving this room until I am content you are giving her the very best of care.
I shall be giving her an enema in a minute, which I beg to inform you is not a spectator sport.
Kelvin: She hasn't eaten since breakfast.
Should I nip out, fetch her some pie and mash? No banqueting in the delivery room.
And no fathers.
You'll round up this family of yours and get them fed, watered, and out of your wife's way.
That includes you.
I'm her father, not the baby's.
Out, now! Kelvin: Come, boys.
Out you go.
Nurse Crane: Come on.
Quick smart, and no dogs.
And relax.
Nurse Crane: Just because you work in a circus doesn't mean you have to give birth in one.
It's not too late to add the ichthyologist to the list.
I have an aversion to fish, Miss Bathurst, so no ichthyologists, thank you.
And no facial hair.
Meanwhile, I've planned my accessories to reflect multiple moods as I deem appropriate: Pearls for restraint, a scarf for pizzazz, and evening gloves for a hint of sophistication.
What's the mink stole for? Mink is mink.
There doesn't have to be a reason for it.
Did I tell you one of them was German? I brought a dictionary, just in case.
That's the ticket.
Make as little noise as you can.
Save all that energy for when you want to push.
I don't yet.
I'm happy standing here, just getting closer and closer.
Never had a mantelpiece to lean on before.
Always lived in caravans.
Given birth in them, too.
I'm tired this time round, though.
[Jacquetta sighs.]
Oh, this is so nice.
And you're so lovely.
[Jacquetta moaning.]
Male background singers: ba boom, ba boom ba boom, ba boom, ba boom Good evening.
How are you? ba boom ba boom, ba boom, ba boom Eartha Kitt: Santa baby just slip a sable under the tree for me ba boom, ba boom been an awful good girl, Santa baby so hurry down the chimney tonight Male: Background singers: b-b-b-boom Kitt: Santa baby a '54 convertible, too light blue ba boom, ba boom I'll wait up for you, dear Santa baby so hurry down the chimney tonight Ein ein moment, ein moment.
You know, babies.
Ein moment.
Kitt: think of all babies.
The fun I've missed Ein moment.
Think of all the fellas that I haven't kissed Heh! I understand that you're a private nurse.
could be just as good if you'd check off my Christmas list [Trixie sighs.]
I'm not getting anywhere.
I'm just not.
We're going to grab that next pain and ride it like a wave.
Jacquetta, stay on your feet.
It's served you very well thus far, but you were tired when you started, and you need all your energy to push this baby out.
Let's get her semi-recumbent.
Come on.
There's a good girl.
We can try the gas and air again once you're a bit more comfy.
Feel like my arms and legs are made of lead.
Ah, you don't need arms and legs for a good, effective labor.
It's like I've got no strength.
[Breathing heavily.]
Ooh [Sobs.]
Long, calm breaths now.
Ooh [Crying.]
[Laughter and overlapping chatter.]
Her pulse is 130, and her respiration's also very rapid.
Shall I send for doctor? Tell him elective forceps, but we do need him quickly.
Jacquetta: Ooh! [Door closes.]
Sister Hilda: And tell him we'll need more gas and air, if he would be so kind.
[Laughter and chatter.]
Give us a kiss, Sister.
Put me out of me misery.
I shall put you over my knee if you don't let me pass.
[Raucous laughter.]
What's the matter? Ha ha ha ha! Why does she need the doctor? You're going to push, but I'm going to pull.
The thing to remember, Jacquetta, is that baby's in a good position.
We just need a bit of teamwork to help get him out.
You're on the home straight now.
Ready with the first blade And the second blade.
[Jacquetta groaning.]
Push now.
Sister Hilda: Come on, pet.
Nurse Crane: There's a [Jacquetta wailing.]
Turner: Hmm.
Try to keep working with me, Jacquetta.
- No.
- Keep trying to push.
I think she's had a touch too much gas.
Jacquetta: Oh! Contraction.
Come on, lass.
You hang on to me.
[Jacquetta crying.]
- It's out.
- Ow! And we have some meconium.
[Jacquetta whimpering.]
Jacquetta: Is it a boy or a girl? It's a boy.
[All chuckling.]
[Crying continues.]
Bar patrons: away in a manger no crib for a bed the baby's been born and we're wetting his head [All cheering.]
[Distant chatter and laughter.]
Any chance of a proper circus christening this time out of a top hat in the middle of the ring? Nurse Crane: Is that the tradition? As old as the big top itself.
Jacquetta: You did it to me.
You're not doing it to my kids.
[Baby fusses.]
All I ever wanted was peace, quiet, a bay window, and a privet hedge.
Perhaps you'll be so kind as to locate baby's father and inform him that his son has arrived.
Promise me you won't leave Jacquetta alone.
Are you in pain, Jacquetta? [Jacquetta breathing heavily.]
Your hands are cold, lass.
We're just going to look you over, Jacquetta, and make sure that everything is as it ought to be.
Check her pulse.
Pulse is up, 150.
You've had your orders, Mr.
Out! Sister Hilda: She's cyanosed.
Percival: Her lips are going blue.
Orders revised.
We need an ambulance.
Tell them we've a newly delivered mother who is having a heart attack.
Sister Hilda: I thought she was hemorrhaging.
Nurse Crane: Run! [Baby crying.]
[Door closes.]
Sister Hilda: Pulse up again.
It's all right.
He's fine.
No! [Whimpers.]
Get her sitting up.
Quick! Nurse Crane: Jacquetta, lass.
Sister Hilda: She's fading.
Your work's not done.
Baby needs you, Jacquetta.
That's your little boy.
[Crying continues.]
He's coming, lass.
Hang on.
He's just coming.
[Crying continues.]
Hey [Crying stops.]
Here's your baby.
That's it, lass.
You take your strength from him.
[Telephone ringing.]
[Line beeps.]
Turner, it's my Gloria.
She's not doing so well.
Well, she won't stop crying, Mrs.
I don't know what to do.
Firstly, you must call me Shelagh, and secondly, your timing's perfect.
My husband's just come home.
[Overlapping chatter.]
Hubby's meeting us at St.
You sure you don't want to go with her? She's in the best of hands, and there's somebody else that needs some looking after.
Turner: Everything is completely normal.
But I'm not having it yet? There's no change in your cervix to indicate labor.
Gloria: It says "incompetent cervix" in all my notes.
You've seen them.
Turner: Yes, I have.
What we're going to do is this: Keep you in here with regular checks from our midwives until you go into labor.
Are you awake? An inquiry that cannot be answered in the negative.
I have my breviary and thought we might say compline together.
I would rather you read from the Christmas edition of the "radio times.
" But you don't have a television in here.
There is a television in the parlor at Nonnatus House.
Sister I'm not going to give you false encouragement.
You're going to be in hospital for a number of weeks.
Quite apart from anything else, you're not going to be able to manage stairs for months to come.
[Inhales sharply.]
Do you need to ring for a bedpan? I would have thought of it an indignity once.
Now I should embrace it with good grace.
A catheter? Oh, you poor pet.
It tethers me more than the cast upon my leg.
I am as racked and pinioned as a game bird, and no matter how I rail, I cannot take flight.
[Dog barking, distant horse neighs.]
[Inhales deeply.]
Jacquetta's where she needs to be, with doctors who can help her.
You concentrate on your own well-being for a moment.
I keep thinking Is it my fault? Did I work her too hard? Did I force her to live a life that's killing her because I loved it? In my line of work, Mr.
Percival, I meet a very wide variety of people, and they have a very wide variety of aspirations.
There's no one dream that suits us all.
Oh, I don't hold with dreams.
They get in the way of action.
Be that as it may, Mr.
Percival, dreams can be lovely things to have.
Jacquetta wants her own mantelpiece.
I would have relished a life on the high wire.
There are so many things that must feel like flying.
I once tried to work Snowy into the high wire act.
He wouldn't cooperate.
More fool, Snowy.
That's all I have to say.
Come on, before that oxygen wonders what it's done to offend.
[Sighs, inhales deeply.]
Oh, will you just look at that? I've spent my whole life making people gasp, making magic, and then Mother Nature goes and steals a march on me.
It was the big top I was admiring, not the snow, and I'd be obliged if you didn't tell me how you make the magic.
It might interfere with my imaginative process.
Well, we can't have that.
Imagination isn't generally associated with a demeanor like mine, but I rather enjoy my occasional forays into fantasy.
I find I can give the real world such a buffing up.
You want to see me on that trapeze in my mind's eye.
I'm 35 years younger, slim as a rail, and I've got legs as long and flexible as ribbons.
In my mind's eye, I'm Charlton Heston in "The Greatest Show on Earth.
" Ah.
Ha ha ha ha! [Chuckles.]
Go on, get inside before you catch your death.
[Engine turns over.]
What are you doing out of bed, Mrs.
Venables? It's the middle of winter.
You need your slippers on.
I've started having pains.
Kenley: Ah, Mrs.
Jacquetta Ellings.
Elective forceps delivery by G.
, followed by collapse and probable acute cardiac arrhythmia.
Any suggestions? Mr.
Greenhill? Hypervolemic shock, sir? Did I say at any point that the mother had suffered a hemorrhage? No, sir.
Peripartum cardiomyopathy, or heart failure.
It can develop late in pregnancy or in the weeks immediately afterwards.
Heart failure? No cause for alarm.
You've lived to tell the tale.
But m-my mother died while she was having me.
Do you think that might be what happened to her? Best not to start fretting over ancient histories.
Proper medication and continued rest will rectify this problem, and of course, no more of these babies.
We'll get you fitted with a Dutch cap.
[Pats bed.]
And off we go, gentlemen.
Shelagh: That's it, try to just breathe the pain away.
She's been going on like this for hours.
Can't you give her gas? The gas and air machine is in the delivery room, and I'd rather wait until your labor's more advanced.
Sister Frances: Knock, knock.
Here we are hot, sweet, and with a bourbon in the saucer.
Oh, can't he take it out into the corridor? It's not for him.
It's for you.
Ohh! Shelagh: I'm quite sure there's another in the pot.
[Gloria sighs.]
[Sets down tray.]
[Ringing bell.]
Get your Christmas turkeys! Oven-ready turkeys! I'll pick up Christmas Eve afternoon! And a complimentary Christmas pud while stocks last! Hello, doc.
What can I do for you? I am under instructions to order a turkey big enough to feed six hot with all the trimmings, plus sandwiches at teatime and enough for a fricassee on boxing day.
That'll be a large, then.
Take a free Christmas pudding.
But, in fact, take two 'cause that one looks a bit dented.
Are you are you not coming to Nonnatus House, then? Not this year.
It's just going to be us, at home.
Everyone will really miss the kiddies.
Well, if that's what you want.
I've always been a bit "the more the merrier," Fred.
Well, you leave this with me.
Shelagh [sighs.]
We had a laugh when we were in St.
Cuthbert's, didn't we? Yes, we did.
I'm having to remind myself.
Why? So that I can remind you.
So you don't think that I've always been this miserable so and so who can't churn a smile out when basic good manners call for one.
You're about to have a baby.
I'd advise you to forget about basic good manners.
And I don't think you're a miserable so and so.
I think you're someone whose strength has been tested too many times, and having to be brave can make us so afraid.
Were you afraid when you had Teddy? Sister Julienne delivered him, so I had a friend with me, just like you.
So then why am I so stuck? Why can't I make this happen? Oh, Nurse Crane.
A Mr.
Percival just telephoned from the circus.
He asked if you might call in and see him today.
Me personally? I imagine he's having trouble with his oxygen supply.
I'll squeeze him into my rounds this afternoon.
I was at the desk, looking for the London directory of clinics.
It's mostly a list of private facilities.
Oh! Seek and ye shall find.
[Footsteps fade.]
[Footsteps approach.]
Gloria is fractionally more dilated.
We could move her in here now, but it's a bit of a bleak environment if she's in for a long haul.
I think there's something Gloria isn't letting in, something she can't address or accept or admit.
And if I'm right, I don't know if I can bear it.
Heh! Hey, hey! Ho ho! Oy! [Giggles.]
Police clown: I've got you.
Percival's in his office.
Reggie, what are you doing here? Working.
Oh, I like the lad.
He makes a decent cup of tea.
Sometimes, in the middle of winter, that's all that's required.
Percival, I was under the impression that you needed to see me because you were unwell.
Lights, if you please! [Fanfare playing.]
I thought you were starting boxing day.
Nadia, if you could take the lady to backstage, as we discussed.
[Distant circus music playing.]
[Sets down spoon.]
" "R.
" Madame.
I pride myself on always being game for an adventure.
This isn't a mere adventure, Nurse Crane.
This is the substance of dreams.
All you have to do is trust me, and for the rest of your days, you'll know what it is to fly.
Whee! Nurse Crane: Ah! Ah! Ha ha ha! Whee! I know "R.
" means dead.
Fred: Well [Sighs.]
It doesn't mean dead as such, Reg.
It means "rest in peace.
" People lied.
Sometimes people lie because, uh Don't want you to be sad.
I'm not stupid.
Fred: No, you ain't.
Snowy died because animals do, like people do.
You understand all of that, and some of it, you understand more than most.
Reggie: You gave me beer and said it was respect.
I want respect.
Violet: Oh, Reggie.
And beer? [Chuckling.]
Thank you, Mr.
That was a very rare privilege.
Heh heh heh [Coughing.]
Now it's time for you to trust me.
I'm telephoning for an ambulance because you need to go to hospital.
Gloria You said you don't like to talk about your other babies I don't like to talk about my other pregnancies.
There were seven of them.
That's a lot of not talking and a lot of pain.
Every time they, uh, sent me home After I'd lost another one After they'd taken it away and never let me see it They'd say the same thing The doctors, uh, the nurses, my mother, my friends "put it out of your mind" and so I pretended that I had.
Even with Tony? [Voice trembling.]
And all the time, my mind has been full of them.
Everything I never saw, I could imagine.
I knew if they were boys or girls.
I knew the color of their eyes.
I knew everything, and I still know it, all of it and all of them [Sobbing.]
Because I've never let them go.
Mothers don't, do they? Mothers let go all the time.
If they didn't, there wouldn't be room for love to grow.
The one I lost when we were in St.
Cuthbert's was a girl.
It was the furthest I'd ever got, and I used to think, "this one's different.
"Oh, this one's fierce.
This one's going to make it.
" [Groaning.]
[Gloria exhales.]
In my mind, I call her Ruth.
It's such a strong, plain name.
Tell us about her.
Tell us about Ruth.
Gloria: Ruth's three now, nearly old enough for dancing lessons.
She's got long hair, and now I've started tying it in bunches.
Oh, it's, uh [Hisses.]
It's thick and brown and has golden threads in it that catch the light on a sunny day.
And when I kiss her head, it smells of vosene.
They all smell of vosene, my babies.
Sister Frances: Clean children are loved children.
Oh, every one of mine is spotless.
The one after Ruth, she was another girl.
Yeah, I called her Rebecca.
My first boy was Brian.
Oh, he'd be eight and a half now.
He's got rosy cheeks and scabs on his elbows from coming off his go-kart.
Oh, I have to tell him not to pick at them, but He doesn't listen.
Gloria: David was next, but he's not like Brian, no.
He's, um, oh, he's quiet, loves the small things, like spiders and caterpillars, even wasps.
He looks at their wings through a magnifying glass.
He's always asking "Why? Why, Mum?" We all know that feeling.
And then there was Peter.
[Groaning loudly.]
[Gloria groaning.]
Gloria: Uhh! Have you told us about all of your babies now, Gloria? Brian David Peter Ruth Rebecca John And Anthony? Thank you for saying their names.
Sister Frances: You're fully dilated now, Gloria.
When you feel ready to push, you can.
[Gloria groaning.]
This is the head coming, Gloria.
Just pant now, pant.
Your baby's head is resting in my hand now.
Oh, I swear, I can hear that snow falling.
[Baby crying.]
Oh, what is it? A little girl.
You can hold her the minute I've cut the cord.
Could you can you do it? [Sobbing.]
[Baby continues crying.]
[Crying stops.]
I'm a mum, Shelagh.
I'm a mother.
You've been a mother for a long, long time.
You look better.
You look better in a top hat and tail coat.
They're letting me out tomorrow.
What for? Good behavior? I'll be back in day after boxing day.
They're going to drain some fluid off, and after that You need rest, Dad.
I need to close the circus down.
Not yet.
[Baby fussing.]
I could sew you a sequined ruff or something, like I did for Snowy when he started looking decrepit.
God love you, Jacquetta.
You always put the graft in, even when all you wanted was a bay window and a privet hedge.
Anyone can have a bay window and a privet hedge.
You gave me a cathedral made of canvas and a bird's-eye view of people gasping.
You gave me stardust, Dad.
I didn't have much else.
Well, it may interest you to know that I have been given permission to go out tomorrow afternoon.
Where to? A christenin' In the ring.
Him? Him and the other two.
Want to do it properly, Dad.
Want to do it the circus way.
I might have had enough, but My boys have hardly started.
Maybe it wasn't my stardust anymore, but who's to say it won't be theirs? It is in their blood.
You're in their blood.
You always will be.
Just like your mother is in yours.
Turner's surgery.
Millicent? Miss Higgins: Yes.
Phyllis? I'm feeling suddenly emboldened.
Heh heh heh! Rachel Rose.
I like that.
I wanted "R" names, like our other two girls.
I wish you'd told me how much you thought about them all.
I thought it might make them less real if I did.
[Distant music playing.]
Is that the Sally army band playing outside? Yeah.
I gave them two Bob on my way in and asked if they did requests.
Tony: That'll be something to tell you when you're a big girl, won't it, Rachel Rose, eh? Two inches of the white stuff and your own brass band.
Yes, it will.
Oh, yes it will.
Heh! Trixie: Ta-da! Ohh! Sister Hilda: Who is the lucky chap this evening? An Oxford-educated financier with a double-barrelled name and investment interests in luxury goods and perfume.
Oh, I hope he isn't fibbing.
Ah! Chant d'Arômes by Guerlain.
Wish me luck.
[Indistinct chatter.]
Lucille: Sister Monica Joan? I come bearing gifts, and I brought you a surprise.
[Cyril and Lucille chuckle.]
Sister Monica Joan: I will not have him here.
Lucille: I thought you would be pleased to see Cyril, Sister.
I'm too ashamed.
Oh, precious, your catheter bag has come adrift.
[Distant piano playing "we wish you a merry Christmas".]
Lucille: There is no medical reason for her to be catheterized! It has all been done for convenience, and not, I might add, hers.
Excuse me.
What do you think you're doing? I am attending to the comfort and dignity of one of your patients, which, as a visitor, I would not be obliged to do if that patient was receiving proper care! We need to get her back where she belongs.
We're going to, and what's more, we're going to do it before Christmas.
[Distant piano playing "deck the halls".]
I'd like my bill, please.
If you wait half an hour, there's an offer on sparkling wine.
I'd like my bill now.
[Distant dog barking.]
[Both chuckling.]
[Lively jazz music playing.]
Both: Ta-da! May I do it now, before we lay waste to the feast? As we agreed.
"And thus we meet, "we spinsters twain, to dine and to make merry.
"No politesse must we endure, "no bath cubes and no Sherry "indulge we now our heart's desire "and for that gratifying reason, "I propose a heartfelt toast to friendship and the yuletide season.
" Happy Christmas.
We can easily make this her bedroom.
But Sister Monica Joan may never recover the ability to walk or climb stairs unaided, if at all.
For months to come, she will require full nursing.
And who better to do that than us, and here, at Nonnatus House? We are skilled, we are willing, and between us all, we have the time.
I spend so much of my life trying to be the voice of reason, sometimes I fail to hear the voice of love.
Dean Martin: oh, the weather outside is frightful but the fire is so delightful and since we've no place to go let it snow, let it snow, let it snow man, it doesn't show signs of stoppin' and I've brought me some corn for poppin' the lights are turned way down low let it snow, let it snow then we finally kiss good night - Shelagh: Oh! - [Children screaming.]
Patrick, that turkey is supposed to be oven-ready! It's dead.
What was Fred playing at? Aah! Oh.
It's a start.
Heh! I've just taken a telephone call from a Miss Bathurst, regarding your involvement with the Albion Introduction Agency, apologizing for a misunderstanding yesterday.
The gentleman was at the wrong hotel.
[Scoffs, chuckles.]
I'm starting to suspect that when it comes to men and me, they're always going to be in the wrong hotel, or I am.
One of the great maxims of my own passage through this life has been "seek and ye shall find.
" One cannot stand still, Nurse Franklin, because challenge, excitement, and a change are heading towards us at some speed.
Are we going to close after all? No We are going to expand.
Early next year, I will be revealing further details.
All: Aw! Ha ha ha! And I baptize you, John Percival Ellings, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
And may his love shine upon you where-so-ever you might go.
All: Yay! [Both laughing.]
Where are you going? I am telephoning Nonnatus House to see if they have any room at the inn.
Older Jenny: And so it is Christmas, as eternally different as it is the same.
We come together, drawn to the place that we call home or where we are simply welcomed in.
We can be broken Merry Christmas.
But we still belong.
We can be fragile, but are valued all the more.
We each have our place, our part to play, our seat at the table, and our purpose.
Ohh! Aah! [Laughter.]
Older Jenny: The future will not be unwrapped just yet.
We cannot know if it holds the things we dream of, and if only for today, that is exactly as it ought to be.
Older Jenny: For now, the moment holds us in its arms.
We are as safe as a child once was, beneath a star and swaddled in a manger.
There is no darkness that is of any consequence [Both chuckle.]
Older Jenny: And yet not one space that is not filled with love.
[Choir singing indistinctly.]

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