Okay. That's what I get for procrastinating.
I went to the place on Lombard I'd seen. Entirely empty lot. Not even visible pine needles on the ground.Started towards the one I'd seen further west and realized that by a week earlier the year before they were already gone.In defeat, I went to Freddie's and they were down to weensie little bouquets of boughs the size of my palm.Had them call the one further towards St. John's and nope, nothin' there either.Made a few quick phone calls and nobody knew of anywhere that had anything.By this time I was trying to convince myself that the presence of two hacksaws and plenty of good blades back in my studio, out in this area with so much pine landscaping wasn't occurring to me at all.Last chance, maybe I can find another ornamental or something at Home Depot. I run and JUST barely catch the bus. The mall is closing as I pass through it. A live musician stands amidst packing vendors singing "rockin' aournd the Christmas Tree."Way to rub it in, fella.I get to Home Depot's garden section.Well, okay then. Trees, trees, and more trees. One woman there captured my thoughts on looking at the signs. "These NOT cheap." No, they certainly weren't.I decide that this matters, by jiminy. I made a promise to all of you that there'd be a proper tree and so there'll be a proper tree. Gods all help me if they don't let me take this on the bus.I choose my tree and start walking to the cash registers. Five or six H.D. employees are standing at a desk drinking coffee; one calls out to me, "you that's a free tree, right?"
"You're serious!?""Yup. We've still got tons of those things. We don't know what to do with them. So today we're giving them away."
Well, kiss my Tannebaum and call me the Green Man!
And yes, the bus driver was graceful and entirely sweet about letting me bring my tree on the bus.