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Judy Murray: Let’s enjoy another curtailed Christmas in the sure knowledge of better times ahead

© Joel Ryan/Invision/AP/ShutterstoJoanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders, centre, at premiere of the Absolutely Fabulous movie 
in 2016.
Joanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders, centre, at premiere of the Absolutely Fabulous movie in 2016.

It’s been a long and tough couple of years since we first heard of Covid so it was gutting to discover we must rein ourselves in again this Christmas.

It’s dispiriting but it doesn’t all have to be gloom and doom. As we have been saying all the way through this ordeal: “We are in it together” and what matters most is being with the people we love, safely and responsibly.

We are so much better prepared this time round. We know a whole lot more about the virus, we have experienced a huge range of restrictions and regulations, we have become used to adapting to rule changes and now have vaccines and treatments.

All of that should make it easier to manage so while it’s disappointing, we do all have to heed the data and the science, because in Scotland that has been our government’s position the whole way through. They have been consistent throughout this pandemic and we should not all start doing our own thing now. We must not take our foot of the gas just because we are fed up.

Remember that last year the rule was only eight people from three households allowed to gather together on Christmas day? And Boxing Day saw most us back under Level Four restrictions.

Well it’s a different ball game this year. We don’t have those kinds of restrictions. So let’s try to focus on what we can do rather than what we can’t do and make the absolute best of that.

So if only three households can get together under one roof, we should make sure we stick to that. But let’s take lateral flow tests before we meet, and stick on an extra Christmas jumper so that we can stay warm when we open windows to get rid of any infectious particles that might be in the air.

We should remind ourselves of the basics – to socially distance and wear a mask, wash our hands regularly or use hand sanitiser wherever and whenever those things are in place.

We all know that at parties, it’s so easy to forget and become a little bit careless, especially when alcohol is involved. So it makes sense not to get too trolleyed, much as we might like to, because that way we can remember what we ought to be doing.

I, for one, will be spreading my social calendar across the whole festive period rather than doing something different each day.

Prioritising what we really want to do and who we really want to be with, rather than trying to go to everything and be with everyone, will help us stay safe and keep those we love safe too.

We have all got to play our part in this to avoid another huge outbreak and a massive problem for our NHS and economy. But let’s not forget the spirit of Scotland.

Christmas and Hogmanay are special days for us and while we might not be able to do everything we might want to, we need to keep focused on the long-term and getting through this pandemic together.

Better times are ahead.

I loved Lorraine Kelly dressing-up as her pop idol Adele last week. She was totally transformed in a long blonde wig and fake nails to mimic the superstar singer’s look from her Easy On Me music video.

I loved the over the topness of it all! What fun to get out of your comfort zone and into the character of somebody you admire for a day. Sometimes a bit escapism is just what we need so who would I dress up as?

I’d go for Patsy in TV’s Absolutely Fabulous. hair piled high in a bun, skyscraper heels, skin tight mini dress and a glass of fizz in her hand. The only thing I’d ditch is the cigarette!

I met Joanna Lumley – who played Patsy – when I did a Children in Need event for Chris Evans and his Radio 2 show a few years ago. He auctioned off Mary Berry, Joanna and me at a private Christmas lunch at one of Rick Stein’s restaurants in London.

People could bid for tables with a six-course lunch and a Q&A with the three of us and Chris. For each course, we moved to a different table and it raised £250k. Not bad for a few hours work!

I stumbled on Simon Cowell’s new singing show Walk The Line completely by accident when I was waiting for something else to come on TV. I only caught the end of it, but that was enough.

It’s yet another reinvention of X-Factor but this one has to be the most brutal. I saw the winner being asked to choose betwen accepting the £10,000 prize or coming back the following night to face another set of wannabes and a chance to land the ultimate prize of £500,000.

There’s always some great talent in these shows but there are also some who are pretty ropey and it always feels like the cruellest exposure to watch them fail in front of a live audience, never mind the TV viewers as well.

I was willing the contestant to take the money and run. Why would you put yourself through something like that? I suppose it is all about how desperate you are to be famous or noticed.

And if I thought Walk The Line was heartless, it paled into insignificance when saw the footage of the postman captured on a door cam in Falkirk leaving a pensioner lying in the snow after a fall.

He was apparently fired by Royal Mail after February’s incident when he seems to tell the lady he is too “knackered” to help her up. As the video went viral, I bet he wished he had done the right thing when he had the chance.