Monday, December 12, 2011

Clark W. Griswold, Eat Your Heart Out!

Last night, my husband and I spent the evening with our second oldest son, who has an apartment about an hour south of us. We helped him get his tree up and decorated, and then we had dinner with him.

While we were there, we took a drive over to see a house near the school at which our son teaches, a house that everyone down there seems to know about. People come from miles around every Christmas season to check it out. This house is locally famous for the over-the-top light display the family who lives there sets up every year the day after Thanksgiving. Our son tried to describe how amazing it was, but we were still surprised when we pulled up. Not only the large house, but also the extensive property surrounding it, was lit up--I was going to say "like a Christmas tree"...Okay, that fits, yes: like a Christmas tree! It made the Griswold house in the movie "Christmas Vacation" look bush league, I tell you. I don't have the ability to take panoramic shots with my camera, and the picture I'm posting only gives you a small taste of what we saw, but here you go:

There was a sign posted near the house that said, "Please enjoy the lights from the street." So we got out of our car and walked around, oohing and ahhing, and just in the ten minutes or so that we were there, about eight other cars came down the street, obviously for the same purpose. My favorite part of the whole display was this oversized Nativity, protected by a sheet of plexiglass, set up near the end of the driveway:

After seeing this Christmas wonderland, my husband and I sort of had that "Our decorations stink!" feeling. But truly, how could anyone compete with this? Even Clark W. Griswold's efforts don't compare. It must cost a fortune to set up and maintain an exhibit like this, and it must take days to take it all down, organize everything, and pack away those thousands of strands of lights so that they're ready to put up again the next year. That's not an undertaking for the faint of heart. The house right next door made us laugh, because you could tell the owners had decided that if you can't beat 'em, don't even try. They had one Christmas decoration only, standing right in the middle of their front yard: a large, lit-up GRINCH. You gotta love their sense of humor!

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