It's beginning to look a lot less like Christmas, but the cards are sent and the presents are wrapped and the tree is up. I've seen It's A Wonderful Life again and made my annual trip to the Shankill for the locally smoked salmon, but the routines have changed, of course.
Neighbours usually invite us round for mince pies and drinks. This year, we chat on garden paths on brief tentative visits. It is normally a time for keeping in touch, dropping in on people, stamping cold feet on the step and giving hugs and tasting mulled wine. Instead, we stand back and try not to breath on each other.
But since it is the season of goodwill, I'd like to take this chance to send a few greetings, if I may.
A special Happy Christmas to students, who must be wondering by now if they are the victims of an undeclared experiment. They have been treated brutally.
They were brought back to universities and then confined to halls of residence, to study online as they could have done at home. I particularly wonder about the hundreds of Chinese students who were flown in here in September. How are they getting on?
As Christmas approached, the rules were relaxed and then, at the last moment, tightened, so that thousands now can't come home. Thousands, however, scrambled to the railway stations to get out before the big London lockdown, presumably spreading the virus among themselves in the congestion and then firing it off to all parts of the country.
A Happy Christmas, too, to those in care homes who have been getting visits at windows, particularly the confused who can't really grasp why they are being treated so strangely.
And I wish, but don't expect much, of a Happy Christmas for those bereaved in this year of excess deaths, some of whom didn't even get to be with the dying, either to visit them in hospital, or to sit with them towards the end.
Nor did they get to have their whole extended families round them at wakes and funerals, but had to cut themselves off from community when most in need of support and distraction.
They must be particularly perplexed by those who regard this all as a hoax, or a fuss over nothing, who seem to lack the capacity to focus on the dark reality that has descended. And I would like to say Happy Christmas to the care workers and the nurses and doctors and the health service workers and acknowledge that it was the failure of planning and preparation that left our hospitals more exposed, so that they hit critical saturation when the level of infection was actually lower here than in parts of England.
Yet, infection rates in the Republic are so much lower still that they can spare ambulances for us and for that we must say thank you and Happy Christmas. And also to the many health service workers who will not get home on the day.
A special Happy Christmas is due to teachers, who have been exposing themselves to concentrations of the virus in our schools and trying to manage courses in classes in which many pupils are always missing, infected, or in isolation.
And it can't be easy being a politician either, so I say Happy Christmas Arlene and Michelle and Robin and Naomi and their many colleagues, who have to keep up with the threat level from Covid-19 and fend off, or accommodate, the sectional interests of industry and commerce. I would not want to have the responsibility of managing this crisis, or to face the criticism for failing.
Of course, they have known for years that we needed radical reform of our health service and failed to provide it. They have read the reports on how badly it meets our needs and so far have done nothing.
The story about the patients being treated in ambulances in car-parks was met with the cynicism of those who say that we have hospital congestion crises every winter - and we do. But please don't go back to the normal level of congestion, thinking it acceptable.
But enough lecturing. You are entitled to your turkey and mulled wine. I hope you enjoy them. Just make a few New Year resolutions afterwards to give us a health service that works for us.
Happy Christmas also to the struggling business people who had to close for much of the year, many of whom will have been broken by this, perhaps to an extent that we will not know clearly until this is over. And to the lonely and the anxious. And to the heroic people running food banks that have been made necessary by the failure of the welfare state to keep its promise to provide a safety net.
Maybe I should also wish a Happy Christmas to the villainous and negligent, who allowed the country to become so unequal. But they are the Scrooges of every Christmas, who think that their wealth and power are endowments that came to them in recognition of their superior human worth. By that logic, those who are poor and powerless are undeserving of elementary dignity.
So, the burden of care for the homeless, the hungry and those who can't manage is shifting from the state to charities and volunteers. Happy Christmas to all of them.
And, of course, Happy Christmas to all my "friends" on social media, some of whom aren't a bit friendly. But maybe if they can relax and unwind a bit, they will be in more genial form in the New Year.
What is reassuring about most of the venom that they spit at me is that it carries no suggestion of considered analysis. They have their bag of stock jibes and don't even have to think about how much sense they make.
And to all whom I have offended, intentionally or unintentionally, Happy Christmas.
And I wish a Happy Christmas most of all to the Covid sceptics and deniers, for these will be the hardest to please as they sit at home grumbling about how unnecessary all the controls are.
Some of them are complaining that so few have died, counting that as proof that there never was a need to worry.
Their big mistake has been to confuse limited success against the virus for evidence of the whole effort being pointless. You couldn't save these people from themselves if you tried.
These are hard times, but every small delight retrieved from the gloom is a victory, so Happy Christmas everyone.