Sunday 14 December 2008

Dragging the Christmas tree home

Forest of East Amsterdam

The rat race for Christmas has begun and nowhere is it as evident as at the flower shop just outside my apartment tower round the front towards the supermarket.

Every Yuletide, I run the gauntlet of a survivor terrain, a forest of Christmas trees arrive like a stage set for Macbeth [alluding to the prophecy that Macbeth would rule till the forest moved to his castle] and each year the activity gains in sophistication, and it is brisk business.

First it was the netting used to pack the flailing branches into some compact tree baggage – adequate description fails me – then, people worried about how to pot the tree; so there was the cross stand on which to mount the tree.

Taking a trick stand

The new innovation is a metal foot lever stand which seems to be reusable, there would be many an erect Christmas tree standing proud in homes this year and the inventors would be laughing all the way to the bank.

The stand is just so gimmicky and smacks of gadgetry, typical of anyone getting there for a tree and ending up with a complete sawmill, you just see it and your mind works overtime about how lovely it looks, how neat the idea is, you have parted with your money long before you get home and realise you should have asked for a user manual – Ha! Ha! Ha!

The family with kids and papoose in tow arrive and end up with a 2-metre height Christmas tree which would never fit in the car boot but they probably will snap the tree in two and glue it together again back at home, this is where duct tape comes into its own.

Christmas tree transport

The versatility of the bicycle is tested to its limits as I was forced to stand and watch how the bicycle would be used to cart away the tree, they succeeded but I wondered about it all.

Just then the baby was kicked out of the papoose for a more important passenger and that is not to say of the number of 50s-era design prams that had another road test for the Christmas tree.

With the credit crunch leaving us clenching our teeth in reactive pain for the cost of everything and our ability to meet the cost, I thought a shorter Christmas tree might have sufficed, but I leave bedecking the tree with baubles to the sophisticated and initiative of those who would do well and excel.

Palm trees for Christmas kisses

I have never been persuaded of a Christmas tree, in fact, long ago I had a good long-distance lover’s tiff on the need to get one, and we each had Christmas in separate places in the end.

Since I would not be around to take the Christmas tree down after the 12th day of Christmas, I have a good enough excuse doing without one – they usually end up in the neighbourhood bonfire at the New Year.

I would be having palm trees to hug for Christmas, hopefully I would not end up under a mistletoe bush, I have kissed too many frogs already, I need the kiss of life.

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