My apologies dear readers. I don't have much to post this morning as I spent the better part of the weekend getting my Christmas freak on. It started Saturday morning at the crack of dawn (O.K. 7:30 am which for me is the crack of dawn) when I was the very first to arrive at my local marché. I purchased the biggest, baddest tree they had (a two and a half meter Norway Spruce).
When the tree was delivered a few hours later I was teased by my husband (Didn't they have anything bigger?) and screamed at by my persnickety Parisian concierge for the trail of pine needles leading from the lobby up to my sixth floor flat. She demanded to know why we hadn't taken it up in the elevator so I showed her the tree after which she exclaimed Non mais vous êtes folle? Whatever.
Finally, once the tree was safely in its corner looking majestic, I popped over to Le Bon Marché for lights. I admit to having a love/hate relationship with this oh-so-Parisian department store. I love their product mix but I resent their appalling customer service. Having said this, they have the most beautiful Christmas ornaments and decorations in all of Paris. When I asked one of the salespeople for help selecting the right set of lights, a polite gentleman dutifully obliged. Then, when I asked him if the lights interconnected such that I could string together enough sets of lights to cover the entire tree, he looked at me as though I were from Mars: Cela n'existe pas Madame. When I told him that they do indeed exist and how else was I going to illuminate a two and a half meter Norway Spruce, he responded: Madame, no one in Paris has trees that size. Whatever.
Finally, I had to resort to using the U.K. lights purchased last year in London with a suitable adaptor supplemented by a few extra sets. I then spent the better part of the weekend lovingly decorating my gorgeous tree. My ritual includes first blasting the Christmas music (Ella Fitzgerald's Ella Wishes You A Swinging Christmas - best compilation of Christmas songs ever), popping the cork on a good bottle of Ruinart rosé brut and laying out the hundreds of ornaments accumulated over the last decade or so. My ornaments are a veritable trip down memory lane. There are ornaments purchased from my first sojourn in Paris, there are those from my New York years (most of them purchased from Saks and Bergdorf's, two departments stores who do Christmas exquisitely) and most recently those from my London years (Fortnum & Mason has the best).
It took the better part of the weekend to do justice to my tree and I now find myself slightly panicked this morning because I didn't get any work done. Having said this, I wouldn't change a thing. Christmas comes but once a year and for me, its still magical. I am a Christmas Freak and I don't care who knows it.
The Luxe Chronicles