Finding a lovely tree

Published 3:45 am Wednesday, August 14, 2019

I felt a little ridiculous scrolling through page after page of Christmas décor. It was only July, but I was spending a lot of time resting after surgery so why not? I decided to purchase some new Christmas trees while they were on sale.

After Christmas last year, I tossed my old ones. They were beginning to look a little ratty, but maybe toss isn’t the best word. I gave them away since they did have a little life left in them. My daughter in love took one for her upstairs tree, and the other two went to a local thrift shop. Cherrie is so artistic, and I was sure to be amazed at what she would do with it.

When a person — me — has too much time on her hands and a credit card available, things can quickly get out of hand. It’s too easy just to click a key without thinking of the reality of, well, paying for the stuff. Really, everything can happen so fast! That online buggy can fill up before my brain has had time to engage in the process. If I’m at a brick-and-mortar store, I can walk around and think things over, but the other day I was tired of sitting around so much and decided to get something done.

I had recently been asked to participate in a Christmas Pilgrimage for one of the local clubs. It is basically a chance for the townsfolk to get out and see their friends and neighbors while enjoying local homes and churches dressed up for the holidays. I love decorating for Christmas, and all the money collected for ticket sales goes directly to fund scholarships so I was excited to be a part.

But the pilgrimage is always on the first Saturday in December, and I didn’t even have Christmas trees! Maybe that’s why I got a little carried away with my shopping. I found three beautiful trees and quickly made my purchase. Shortly after completing the transaction I began to mull things over, and it hit me. Those trees were crazy expensive! I measured the areas where they would go again and decided that the large, lush trees I had ordered would be too big anyway. With I sigh of relief I logged back on to the web to cancel my order.

“Wait! Is this even legal?” I yelled.

I began to feel panic rise when I read the fine print. I had exactly 30 minutes to cancel my order, and I had been thinking it over for at least 15. Worse than that, I couldn’t cancel from my iPhone; it had to be from a desktop! I rushed around with that time clock ticking in my brain fumbling to get on my other computer and find my order. Finally, with only minutes to spare I completed the cancellation. I was elated, but I still had no trees. Then I had an idea, a great idea. Maybe I could borrow Cherrie’s lovely upstairs tree!

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at