What are we going to do without a Christmas Tree to decorate this year? Aguantamos, we suffer it, and put our presents under a table and prepare a sumptuous Christmas dinner and go to Midnight Mass if we can. But it just won’t be the same.
by Mary Foran
Last week a terrible thing happened: an arsonist burnt down the Christmas Tree that had been set up in Fox News’s Square in New York City.
The arsonist was caught, but he didn’t get bail since New York had reformed its bail laws, and he was let free to offend again.
Within 24 hours, the Fox News network had set up another Christmas Tree and had a lighting ceremony broadcast live on TV. They said that an unbalanced arsonist wasn’t going to spoil Christmas for everybody.
The Christmas Tree in America is a symbol of hope and tradition, and comes from the Tannenbaum of the German immigrants who came in waves to American shores.
Christmas Tree farms live for the Christmas season, and Christmas Tree stands spring up all around the cities every year, at least that’s what we thought would happen when we moved to Eastern Oregon.
What we have found is that there are no Christmas Tree stands in the city that we can discover. And artificial trees are so hokey and expensive that we have hesitated there too.
The lack of Christmas Trees could be because of the dryness of the climate that isn’t propitious for the growing of Douglas fir and pine trees. They would have to transport trees from tree farms 215 miles away and the season is short.
So what are we going to do without a Christmas Tree to decorate this year? Aguantamos, we suffer it, and put our presents under a table and prepare a sumptuous Christmas dinner and go to Midnight Mass if we can.
It certainly won’t be the same without a Christmas Tree.
But Spaniards for the most part don’t have Christmas Trees and they seem to get along fine without them. They have Belenes and the Three Kings and a quiet Noche Buena.
We have Santa Claus who comes down the chimney and leaves presents under the decorated Christmas Tree. We leave milk and cookies for Santa and his elves who keep track to see if boys and girls have been good or naughty during the year.
Since houses all used to have fireplaces to heat them, the children’s stockings were hung from the mantelpiece for extra treats.
It was a time for fantasy and magic and a child’s dreams-come-true.
We have to be adult about it and do without a tree this year. But it just won’t be the same.
Featured image/Marco Verch Professional Photographer’s Photostream, CC BY2.0
Fox News Christmas Tree destroyed and restored/Jim.henderson, CC BY-SA4.0
Douglas Fir Forest, 2002/Dave Powell, USDA Forest Serice, CC BY3.0
Belen/Turol Jones, CC BY2.0
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