Sunday, July 7, 2019


When true love fails, try holiday shopping with a pair of boxing gloves.

Because Frances Mountbatten’s boyfriend Spencer doesn’t propose on Christmas day, she slugs him for it with his Christmas gift, a new pair of boxing gloves straight out of the box. When Spencer doesn’t show up at Christmas World at Harrod’s the next morning to buy her an engagement ring on the British holiday of Boxing Day, Frances is wearing the gloves, ready to slug Spencer for the second time. Instead, she finds a gentleman who is willing to fight for her, and she never has to fight Spencer again. 

On Christmas morning, Frances Mountbatten wakes up to a glowing Christmas tree and waits for a knock on her door. Spencer Arthur, her longtime love, finally stands at the door with a pile of packages. She hopes that he finally asks her to marry him. On the side table sits a stack of Frances’ romance novels. Of course, she is one of Britain’s most famous authors. When he doesn’t propose, she stiffly hands Spencer a large, heavy box. He rips open the gold wrapping paper, pulls off the lid, only to find a pair of red boxing gloves. Frances grabs the gloves and shoves them on her tiny hands. Then, she punches Spencer on the cheek, knocking him over in one full swing—he topples onto the wooden floor. 

Moments later, when Spencer regains consciousness, he holds his head, sporting a right black eye. Frances tells him that tomorrow, on Boxing Day, Harrods is having a sale. It starts at 10 o’clock sharp. He is buying her an engagement ring by noon, or she’s knocking him out for good. He says he was planning on doing just that. She will not take off the boxing gloves until he puts a ring on her left hand and tells him to serve himself breakfast. When she arrives in Christmas World the next morning, she takes a seat next to Santa Claus’ house, waiting for Spencer. As noon arrives, Spencer has still not arrived, and she starts to cry, causing the Harrods shoppers to stop with tissues. 

Then, a handsome gentleman with a handkerchief tells her not to cry because it’s Boxing Day, and everything is on sale. Aware of the holiday, she shows the man her gloves. The man, who introduces himself as Harry Williams, asks if he can take her to lunch up on the second floor at The Tea Room. In fact, the gentleman, who works in publishing, has read her novels. Harry helps Frances take off the boxing gloves and leaves them in Christmas World for Santa. Months later, when Spencer appears in shame at Frances’ flat to propose, Harry quickly gets his own pair of boxing gloves and sends him away once and for all. By summertime, Harry proposes on one knee, and Frances marries Harry on Christmas Eve in St. Paul’s Cathedral. Spencer only hears about the wedding, and by this point has several black eyes from other women that he never married. Happier than ever, Frances never puts on boxing gloves again, she only makes sure to catch the good sales with Harry on Boxing Day—the most brilliant shopping holiday.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters

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