Before Thanksgiving, I ordered a really nice tree on sale. Yes, it was a lot of money, but it was a BALSAM fake tree! Those lovely dense branches, so elegant! And tall, and slim, and it would be perfect beside my fireplace! I have just the spot for it, and a quality artificial tree will last for many seasons, so it was worth it! I was so excited! I'd found the perfect tree, the tree of my dreams!
So I waited over a week for delivery, and it finally arrived, and I came home from work, opened the box, and set about setting it up.
And...wait a minute. This doesn't look like a balsam! To quote their own words on their website:
There is nothing quite like a Balsam Fir Christmas tree.It's true, and what they sent me was nothing like a Balsam Fir Christmas Tree. It was not slim, and the branches were sparse and unimpressive. So I dug out the packing slip inside the box - sure enough, they'd shipped a cheap-looking 6.5 ft. Douglas fir - an entirely different tree, with a different stock number. A number that wasn't even close to the correct stock number, so this wasn't a matter of "Oopsie, off by one digit!" The shipping invoice with my order still claimed this was the tree I'd ordered, but it obviously was not. Also obviously, they'd charged me $150 for a tree worth about $50. Apparently all Christmas trees look alike, and they hoped I wouldn't notice a really cheap substitution? Pissed was I, oh yes. And now, of course, the tree I wanted is no longer available in stores or online, even if I had a week or ten days for them to ship me another.
So I put the tree back in the box, dragged it down to my car, and the following day, at lunch, went to Target and returned it. I have a slip crediting $151.50 to my Target card, but as of last night, the credit hadn't hit my account. So last night after work I called their credit card company and navigated one of the most opaque card service automated systems I've ever dealt with to get to a live human in, I'm pretty sure, Mumbai or someplace. This pleasant young man pleasantly informed me that the credit to my card would be processed in 3 to 5 business days. Yep, when you MAKE a purchase it his the card instantly, but when they have to give money back, they take their goddamn sweet time. "Is there anything else I can help you with today?"
No, no thank you. I feel helped enough.
So, today I have to go find a tree, because dammit, I wanted to go all-out decorating this year, and a big tree is the centerpiece of Christmas decoration! I have a granddaughter right nearby who is now old enough to appreciate the effort, and it makes me happy to do it. But today I have a sore throat and a headache, and I'm feeling decidedly un-Christmas-spirited. Nevertheless I shall slog on, and make it so!
I need to get healthy and snap out of it, because tomorrow is Santa in the Park. And again, it'll be 80+ degrees and we'll all be in shorts and flip flops while Poor old Saint Nick sweats in his red suit. And it'll be another year of trying to persuade Miss D that Santa is okay, really! So far she is not buying it, so it may be an hour or so of playing on the playground and watching him from a safe distance with deep suspicion. We'll see.
Time to get off my ass and get Christmasy! I will do it!