Every year for many years, we have made a Christmas tree on a beach wherever we happen to be in the world. We started in 2007 or 2008 or 2009. We can’t really remember the year. It was during one of our work vacations in early to mid-December. (We always had to work over the holidays.)
The tree decorations are trash we find on the beach. Sadly, over the years there has been more trash on most beaches. One exception was Cabo San Lucas in 2017. That’s a manicured tourist beach, but still we managed to find scraps of plastic and junk to decorate our trashy Christmas tree.
For 2022, our tree was created in Chennai, India. And this year — we had help! Our Christmas Hindu helpers arrived just as we started.
As Theo staked out the perfect spot, a local man offered to help find a suitable base. He rummaged through wood in his boat, and produced the base of our tree.
As Theo and I collected the decorations and ‘gifts’ from the junk washed ashore, more local men came to help out. The mannequin head was originally a ‘gift’ under the tree, but one of the guys hoisted it on top as the star, and so that’s how this year’s trashy Christmas tree has a wave-worn, sandy, salty head. Our creation is born!
Merry Christmas from Chennai, India!
Thanks for reading, “The story behind this year’s trashy Christmas tree.”
- Trashy tree in Tulum, Mexico, 2015 (This was so large with trash and sargassum that it became an ‘art installation’.)
- Our trashy Christmas tree in the Philippines, 2019