For many years when I lived alone, I didn’t have a Christmas tree. I would get some boughs and hang some bells, but saw no reason to untangle the lights and grapple with a Christmas tree stand. (I still don’t get how something with so few parts can be so specially designed to test one’s holiday cheer.)
After I moved in with Stewart, I started thinking about putting up a tree again. The first year, I suggested we might get a small one and put it over there, in the corner, where it would be out of the way. I may have been testing him some because, in the beginning, he was pretty Scroogey about Christmas. (We both were, really. Many years of living alone and/or celebrating holidays by rote can do that to a person.) He let me get the tree, but he never really looked at it — or so I thought.
The next year, I said I thought maybe the tree wasn’t worth the effort, that I’d probably skip it. A barely perceptible look crossed Stewart’s face.
Do you want the tree? I asked.
I liked the tree, he said.
I liked it, too, I said.
And that’s how two odd birds came home for the holidays.
One last thing. (There always seems to be one, doesn’t there?)
All I can see when I look at the photo above is that cattywampus icicle, but I decided not to take another picture. I’m not sure if that’s because I’m being lazy or because I’m affirming that the holidays are best when when the icicles are allowed to be askew.
I hope your celebrations are perfectly imperfect and profoundly joyful.