Paul was enjoying coffee on the couch and getting his computer up and running to check his work calendar for the day. Conference calls and expense reports loomed large, but for at least a few moments there was quiet and he could relax a bit.
Suddenly a black and white blur flew by his feet toward the tree and disappeared underneath it. He could hear the tinkling of ornaments as the cat passed under the lowest branches and settled int he corner behind the tree. He leaned over to get the cat in his field of vision and admonish him for being in what is certainly a forbidden zone when, to his astonishment, the cat wiggled his back end (as cats do) and launched himself up and into the middle of the tree.
The weight of the cat more than halfway toward the top tipped the balance of the tree and in slow motion Paul watched the tree come down, as he helplessly tried to reach it in time.
I awoke upstairs to a crashing sound, a yell from Paul, and a moment later, the sound of the cat tearing through the cat door into the bedroom.
I came down the stairs and helped as Paul righted the tree. There was candy cane and colored – ball carnage all over the living room. The pearls hung all cockeyed and forlorn off the branches, the snowflakes in catastrophic disarray.
Water was everywhere; the tree skirt was sopping wet.
It took quite awhile to get the tree somewhat straight again (it’s not ever going to be quite right) so that we could clean up around it.
Luckily we didn’t lose as many of the precious ornaments as I had feared; mostly it was the colored glass balls and candy canes which are easily replaced.
But we weren’t taking any chances this time. Before re-decorating the tree we had to be sure this wouldn’t happen again.
We found a stud in the ceiling, moved the tree under it, and anchored that SOB with wire. Oh yeah, we don’t fool around.
Fortunately the lights are still working; had they not I may have killed the best and cuddliest cat I have ever had. The lights were a total P.I.T.A. (we had to exchange brand new boxes back to the store because they didn’t work – it took forever).
The tree is all fine now and we are back in business.
The cat owes me big time though.