Once again the best of intentions have had to take a back seat to the practicalities of life and I've left it way too late to get properly organised for Christmas.

I'm sure you know what I mean.

It seems like only yesterday I was enjoying my birthday weekend at the end of September and telling myself I should use October to sort out everything for the end of year festive season ahead.

I'd even given it a name. As I sat there on my deck enjoying a nice gin and tonic "Organising October" came to fruition.

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I would get all my Christmas shopping done early, sort out my leave dates, book the dog in for a haircut and motel stay, get a COF for the motorhome, lose weight, get fit, stop drinking so much gin and tonic etc etc.

It would, I decided, be a doddle.

There'd be no in town madness when I selected my gifts, parking would be easy, the dog would get a good haircut instead of one of those embarrassing rush jobs which makes him look like he's got a mohawk.

Poor bugger. It must be so embarrassing down at the dog park sometimes.

Anyway.

As usual none of those things got done.

Now here we are with 20 days or 480 hours left before the big day arrives and we're all running out of time. Photo / Getty Images
Now here we are with 20 days or 480 hours left before the big day arrives and we're all running out of time. Photo / Getty Images

Whether it was my birthday lulling me into a false sense of security with that little man on my shoulder whispering in my ear - "Relax. what's the rush? You've got heaps of time. have another gin. Maybe open those chocolate almonds you're only allowed on special occasions" - or the fact I'm just plain lazy at times I don't know.

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But now here we are with 20 days or 480 hours left before the big day arrives and we're all running out of time.

Now I say 480 hours. The reality is, with the extra work you are going to have to do to cover for people on holiday, 240 hours of those will be spent working. Another 160 hours will be spent sleeping.

Get your calculators out. That takes us down to 80 hours left.

Then of course there's the Christmas party to attend. You'll want to make it a good one after the year you've had so you'll probably push the boat out a bit, drink too much and try to impress Janice from accounts with your slick moves on the dance floor, or office kitchen table, depending on how much your boss is splashing out.

Then there's the party that outfit down the road is holding. They always invite you so you'd better go to that one too.

Kerching. That's just cost you another, say, 10 hours. And of course because you got a little sozzled you'll be feeling like death the next day and totally incapable of doing anything except wishing you had not tried to relive your early years and done shots with the youngies.

That'll be eight hours used up times two please.

So where are we now then. Gulp. Just 54 hours left till Christmas.

Lets not forget you need to go up to the Big Smoke to see the wife's/husband's rellies 'because they can't make it to you for Christmas.

It's a shame they live such a distance away but there's no way round it. It's a day there, a stop overnight and a day back. Then you'll be too tired to do anything. So that's another
48 hours.

On your way back "She Who Must Be Obeyed" will decide the car is not running properly and you will agree it needs to be taken in for a servicing. That'll eat another hour each way into your valuable time.

So now we're down to just four hours.

Between now and the big day you will also have to go round to see the neighbours and have a quick Christmas drink. Enjoyable catch-ups they may be but lets be honest: Have you got the time?

Two of those is going to cost you a minimum of two hours. Let's assume you're really popular and that story you told last year and the year before is still enthralling your audience and you don't want to leave so lets say three hours.

So now, after all that, you've got just one hour to get sorted for Christmas.

With a bit of luck it should only take you 15 minutes to read this article and kick your day off with a smile.

But then you better get a wriggle on and get into it, because as you can see, you are running out of time.