Today is the last day of the month. Also: the last day of hurricane season. To the storms, I say, good riddance! To November….what happened?
Is it just me, or is time flying? I think in my head it’s still September. But no. It’s almost December, as a trip to any store anyplace will remind you, as I was reminded yesterday when I went to the Wal-Mart to make yet another big step in my adult life: I bought a fake tree.
I know. I know! I’m squiriming just writing it. I have always had a real tree, ever since we had our very first Christmas tree in our own house, when I was in college:
This was a serious Charlie Brown Christmas tree. I think I got it for eight bucks, on the day of my last exam. I brought it home, stuck it in a stand, then realized I had no decorations. Those plastic candy canes were from Kerr Drug, ten for a dollar. I believe I had to pull the lights of the wall of our living room, where they functioned as year-round decor. (What can I say? It was a rental, we were young.) I am not sure what that is on the top, but I believe it might be this little plastic dinosaur head we had back then which functioned as our angel. Note the tacked up art on the walls, and my plants, and how the recycling bin was ON MY TABLE. Good gracious. Looking at this tree, though, all I can think is that I was so happy with it. I can’t even tell you. I took pictures, and arranged my little gifts underneath. I felt so domestic. I think it was 1993? Or maybe 1992.
Back then, I never would have thought that thirteen-odd years later, I’d be at a discount superstore buying a fake tree. Normally, we’d wait another couple of weeks, go down to Johnny’s Sporting Goods, and buy ourselves a nice little tree (which would cost much more than eight bucks, but whatever). But the puppy makes this impossible. I can’t even trust her with my shoes, much less something tall and dangling with shiny things. So it seemed to make more sense, this year, to buy a little tiny tabletop tree. The one I got yesterday is three feet tall, and already has lights on it. It will do, for one year.
So in a couple of weeks, I’ll stick it on my sidetable, and plug it in. And I’ll try not to notice that it doesn’t smell real. To make up for it, I’ll pull out my ornaments, and dig down in the box to find a couple of those ten cent plastic candycanes. I keep them, just to remember that first Christmas, and my first tree, all those years ago. Maybe I’ll only put them on this year. A little old, a little new. A little fake. Oh, well. I guess that sums up the holidays, in general, right?