First of all, I LOVE MY CHRISTMAS TREE! Every year I am so in love with it that I would like to cuddle and marry it - if that was legal (and my husband wouldn't wither away within weeks...).
This year, however, I found a special exemplar of a Christmas tree. I don't know how it is with you, but I get this warm feeling and a zing when I see the right tree - it is like love at first sight: if it's not on first sight, it isn't quite right. My man and I strolled through a couple of Christmas tree stands until we returned to the one where we buy it every year anyway, and there I found it. I must confess, however, that turning down the other trees isn't easy for me. For me, going to a Christmas tree sale is like going to the animal shelter. You have a bad conscience towards every tree you don't buy and the worse it looks the worse is your bad conscience.
Anyhow, we found a little tree (I am actually a HUGE Christmas tree person but our flat is so little that we are stuck with the little ones at the moment) which looked as if it had exploded from the middle. It looks like a pom-pom - you know, these things cheerleaders swing around. And it is headstrong, at least that is what I feel about it. My man says I am nuts to associate a character with a tree but that is how it is. Last year we had an elegant and reticent tree but this year it's headstrong, cheeky and a slightly bit nasty. It started when the guy wanted to pull it through this net-application-machine and the tree just wouldn't fit through the one for small trees. It refused straightforwardly and soon the guy had to surrender and pull it through the one for the big trees. Look, headstrong, as I said.
Then we put it up and I decorated it with a style I call "overload with style". Honestly, whenever my Austrian friends see my tree, they nearly keel over as it is so colourful, overloaded and blinky. To my defense, I have to say Tyrolean trees are like the most boring way you could decorate a tree - believe me, it doesn't get any worse unless you just put a tree amidst your living room and be done with it. Here people put straw stars on their trees and still real candles (which is nice but a safety hazard in my opinion and I wouldn't be able to admire my tree without a fire drencher in my hand). But that isn't the worst thing. Most people's trees are just so terribly skeletal that you can virtually look through them and the people don't even seem to put up any effort to hide the holes with baubles or fairy lights or anything.
Enough of complaining, my tree is what it is and I love it the way it looks. Every year I buy a special bauble or decoration for my tree and this year it was an owl bauble. It has a funny story to go with (alright, it's not soooo funny, but worth telling anyway): I was on the Christmas market in Austria and saw the owl bauble. I asked the sales person how much it was and he said it was fifteen Euros but that this very exemplar had a mistake as the felt eyebrows were missing. I told him he couldn't abandon the poor owl just because it had a mistake and said I wanted to have the faulty one - half the price, of course. He agreed with a smile and so I got my odd owl and I LOVE IT!
Now to the donkeys. Have you heard of the theory about a donkey who would starve to death if he was put between two equidistant piles of hay? No? Well, it pretty much says that if you put a donkey between two equidistant piles of hay it would starve to death (which I highly doubt as donkeys aren't as stupid as people and also, I tried it with my dog and she didn't starve. However, it would be interesting with two donkeys, as animals are terribly food-greedy and don't want to share any food, apparently).
At the moment, I feel like this donkey (and NO there is no hay involved in this, it is what I call a "metaphor"). I feel I am between this equi-cool choices in life and instead of moving towards one of them, I stand in the middle, paralysed, unable to move. As soon as I have decided to move in a certain direction, my mind gets off and ponders whether something else wouldn't be better. I think it is the problem with humans and making decisions as making decisions means taking up responsibility for it and people dread responsibility more than a tank of sharks. So, as long as I remain in the middle - even though I am starving - all options are open but as soon as I decide for one pile of hay, the other one disappears and I cannot have it anymore. However, if I don't move anywhere, I will slowly starve and have nothing in the end, which is really stupid.
Well, we'll see.
Another thing I want to tell you about is my eternal love to books. Admittedly, I don't read as much anymore as I used to and would like to, but there is still nothing better than walking into a bookstore and inhale deeply, or the feeling when your fingers touch the rough pages and you smell this particular smell which only books have. I have never understood people who ask me "why do you buy all these books? You will only read them once." Well, my books are my closest friends. I have spent the most wonderful hours in my life with them and you wouldn't say "Why do you keep a friend? You will only talk about the same topics as you did last time. Why don't you look for a new friend. You have already seen this one once."
I think it is ok if people think books are a waste of space; to be honest, I can only feel pity for them rather than anger. They will never know what it feels like to have thousands of friends around you without one single real person being in the room. Reading a book I have already read thousands of times feels like coming home and meeting old friends. It gives me security, a feeling of safety and protection as well as the exhilaration of returning to places I loved more than anything else. Whenever I travel I always ensure I have a Harry Potter book and one season of Gilmore Girls with me as these two make me feel home instantly and is there a better feeling than seeing a person you love, a person you know better than yourself, after a long time? Whether real or fictional?
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