Should the phrase be figuratively understood here?

Byillt   Thu Nov 09, 2006 3:26 am GMT
I'd love to do lunch, but I am booked until next year.

In the sentence above, should the phrase "until next year" be figuratively understood here, meaning I am just very busy, not really indicating that I will be free next year?
George   Thu Nov 09, 2006 3:47 am GMT
When written, no. When spoken, that depends on how it's stated.
Mary   Thu Nov 09, 2006 7:03 am GMT
Just a note: at this time of year, it's not wholly unreasonable that someone would be booked solid until January, considering that many people vacation during the month of December and over Thanksgiving, and that Mary may be out of town on business during other weeks.