I tried to be, though.
It’s never really seemed like it mattered before– I know what the holiday means to me, and I’ve always been content to let myself get caught up in the ways those around me chose to celebrate it. As a little kid, it meant Christmas Eve at my aunt’s house, my dad sleeping over on our sofa, and waking up early to open presents. When I got older, it meant taking the train from my place to visit my mother and grandparents and going out to Ben’s Deli for dinner. After that, it meant following the family traditions my significant-other-at-the-time had. Now that it’s just me and an S.O. who doesn’t seem to have a very strong attachment to holidays, I’d like to be able to start some things.
Long story short, we got a tree from the grocery store.
… Well, a bush.
A tiny rosemary bush, about sixteen inches tall. It looked enough like a pine tree and smells like distilled and condensed awesomeness. I wasn’t entirely sure how we’d decorate it, but I knew we’d figure something out. I looked up cute ideas for miniature ornaments, decided to string a cranberry garland, the works. It might be small, but so’s our apartment. I have never tried to grow rosemary myself, but I was assured that it wasn’t particularly difficult to do so indoors. Hell, I’d managed to grow innumerable plants largely considered to be pains in the ass, how bad could this little bush be? If it’d survived being picked over in a grocery store, it should be fine. Plus, since it was potted, we could take it with us to the next places we move until we have a “forever home” in which to plant it.
These sounded like sufficiently fantastic ideas.
It was with dawning horror that I noticed the large, crispy brown spot near the back of the lilliputian shrub several days later.
I immediately hustled it off to the brightest spot I could find. I did everything but wrap it in a blanket and make it soup while I obsessively Googled things like “rosemary bush brown,” “causes of brown rosemary,” and “dying rosemary bush WHAT DID I DO.” Needles continued to turn brown and drop off most likely, the internet assured me, because my apartment is not exactly central California in June when it comes to providing sunlight.
We hadn’t even gotten ornaments yet, save for one very pretty blown-glass raven I’d received from my ex’s mother a year and a half ago. In retrospect, that’s probably a good thing– there’d be something a little A Charlie Brown Christmas about trying to beauty up a very obviously convalescing rosemary plant.
So, while this bush huddles miserably against the window, we’re without a tree or, really, any decorations to speak of. (Maybe I can make decorating an extremely fecund series of aloe plants into a thing?) I try to move it to the place that seems like its getting the most sun and compulsively check to make sure that the soil is neither too wet nor too dry, but there’s definitely still a tiny ache in my Martha Stewart gland.
Ah well. We’ll try to have a bomb ass vernal equinox and figure this solstice out again next year.
P.S. I wasn’t even remotely kidding about these aloe plants, though. Seriously. They’re multiplying like some kind of space creatures. I’m halfway afraid I’m going to wake up one day and they’ll havbbbbbbbbbbnnnnnnnnnnnnnnm.l;
HA HA, THAT WAS A JOKE. EVERYTHING IS FINE. THE ALOE PLANTS ARE COMPLETELY AVERAGE IN EVERY WAY AND THERE IS NO REASON TO CONCERN YOUR FRAGILE HUMAN MEATSYSTEMS WITH THEM.
I MEAN OUR.
OUR FRAGILE HUMAN MEATSYSTEMS.
I AM A REGULAR PERSON.
Happy Yule, everyone!