When I left the office yesterday afternoon, it was dark outside – I was expecting it, but I wasn’t expecting to see the bare trees in the office courtyard lit up with red, blue and, improbably, orange Christmas lights. Normally by this time I’m in full on holiday mode, with most of my presents already purchased, my advent calendar chosen and my seasonal colour theme perfectly coordinated. But this year has flown by in such a – mostly wonderful – blur that I’m still vaguely surprised that it’s already November. I’ve given only an occasional passing thought to gifts and decorations. I haven’t even had a hot chocolate yet! But there was something about those little lights on the sad trees outside my office, working against the odds to cheer up all of the dreary concrete around, that was somehow heartwarming and it definitely got me into the holiday spirit. Now all I need is a Starbucks red cup and a plate of shortbread cookies. Are you all starting to get excited about the holiday season?