Friday, December 23, 2011


It may have been around 1944. On a previous Christmas my mother (Ada Campioni) had decorated a very small tree. I can remember it well. It was only about a foot high and had a wooden cube for a stand, which was white with colored bells and candles painted on.

The decorations were glass globes of silver or gold color. Some were half-globes with
the hollow side painted in shiny colors of red, blue, and silver. (I still have the last one which survived my playing with them as a child.)That was the same tree that my mother set up for me in June one year, when I was ill with the
measles. That helped me so much to take my mind of my discomfort.

This particular year I so much wanted a real tree. Naturally, my dad “Baffi” was against buying something so expensive, especially since one could not eat a Christmas tree. In later years I realized that he was right. His entire life was devoted to feeding his family. Now at my age, I appreciate him all the more for his choices.

After a short session of grumbling about my request, he took a walk to the top of the hill North of our house.
(near the present site of the University of California, Santa Cruz) He returned with a few mushrooms and
a Redwood branch. “That’s no Christmas tree!” I wailed. “Be quiet and watch.” was my mother’s suggestion.
She produced some thread, and carefully tied the branches, which all grew in the same plane, as Redwoods do.
She pulled them into a spiral shape, and fastened them in place. When that tree received its ornaments, it was
a work of art! I got over my dislike of a redwood tree. Indeed it is the only Christmas tree which I have remembered
for my entire life. It was not so much the tree itself, but that my father had taken the time to do me such a much appreciated favor. I have told this story to some local friends, one of which said, “He must have loved you a lot.” He did indeed.

Saluti e Buon Natale, Gino


IVANO SAYS: Thanks Gino for reminding us what Christmas is really about. Merry Christmas everybody e Sempre Avanti.


mee said...

That my friend is a touching story of the love parents have for their children.You were fortunate and you know it,more now than when you were a child.Thank you for sharing.Happy new year and many blessing for you,your family and all of those who read your blogs.
Denise Aldelia Ward

Ivano Franco Comelli said...

Thanks Denise. Gino and I both appreciate your kind comments. Sempre Avanti.


Below is a conversation I had with Barbara on Facebook, regarding this article. Thanks for your comments Barbara. Always a pleasure speaking with you. ivn0

Barbara Silva: What a touching story, so much love...... grazie for sharing Gino, and Ivano...

Ivano Franco Comelli: Thanks Barbara. Gino always comes up with something at the right moment. I'm sure my mother made sure that we always had a Christmas Tree, but at times the gifts were not that many. SA

Ivano Franco Comelli ‎...above should read "not that many". But those the were there, were quality gifts that seemed to last.

Barbara Silva: Like you, there weren't that many gifts under the tree, but what we got we appreciated and yes they lasted, because we knew how much and what it took to put them there by our hard working parents and grandparents.... I remember one year I got doll, but didn't play with her much, because I wanted her to last and last and thought she was so beautiful, enjoyed just looking at her... kids nowdays get way to much and expensive things they don't appreciate or take care of...put the parents in debt (their choice).... SA