upon hearing about my mother, the man who popularized lighted christmas balls (watch the video embedded in the post on january three; at about the seven minute, thirty second mark he talks about us) and his son arrived at my parents’ house. using a potato gun and a fishing pole, thirteen balls composed of chicken wire and lights were hoisted into the trees outside the house. four were visible from the bedroom window. once their work was completed, they came inside to share stories and compare wounds.
for a few years their greensboro neighborhood has decorated their trees with these lights and nightly traffic through the area is slowed as drivers and passengers are drawn to the spectacle. recently they’ve set up a donation site to collect food for the hungry.
i wasn’t here to meet them, but i have been marveling at the hanging orbs in the front yard ever since. i want to thank them, especially for making my dad so inexplicably happy. he escorts visitors into the street to get the best view of the trees. every night, when the automatic timer is triggered, he runs through the house, like a child on a sugar bender (well, and with chronic back pain), shouting, the lights are on.