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Yep, it’s that time again. Christmas. The time every nomad dreads – when air fares spike, “peak rates” suddenly kick in on accommodation and people start crowding up the local attractions and markets (damn you other tourists getting in my way! Can’t you see I’m busy trying to buy a sarong to replace my fishermans’ trousers?).

It’s enough to get any nomad bah-humbugging into their Instagrammed latte.

Sporks - they always seem like a good idea at the time

Sporks – they always seem like a good idea at the time

Well, if there’s one thing that can get you back in the spirit of things it’s got to be a good old Christmas tree!

Not got one? Why not??? Sure, you’ll only use it once a year, but you’ve been lugging that titanium spork around for 3 years now and you haven’t even used that thing once…

Alright then, what would MacGyver do if MacGyver was a nomad? MacGyver wouldn’t let a little bit of self-inflicted homelessness stand between him and a Christmas tree. So gather up whatever materials you have to hand – beer bottles, broccoli, chewing gum.. – crank up the Christmas tunes and let’s make a tree!

The stick-on tree

This is level one in nomad tree-making. It’s cheap, it’s easy and there are endless possibilities. Just get some paper and some removable mounting tape or sticky tack, cut out paper shapes and stick them to the wall to fashion a 2D paper Christmas tree.

Just be careful when you peel it off or be ready to do a runner before the landlord notices that the paint on the wall has fallen off in a suspiciously tree-shaped pattern….

Paper strip tree

Level 1 – you can do this! (source)

Get fancy with it

Get a bit fancy (source)

Spot the tree!

Spot the tree! (source)

And you don’t have to stick with paper, get creative with whatever materials you have on hand..

Use the postcards you were never going send

Use the postcards you were never going send (source)

Got twigs?

Got twigs? (source)

String it up

String it up (source)

The tasty tree

Perfect for travellers, these trees are short-lived and won’t generate any extra trash, provided you nosh it all down. Who said you couldn’t have your tree and eat it too? Nom nom nom..

The detox tree

The detox tree (source)

The not-so-detox tree

The not-so-detox tree (source)

IF ONLY!!

IF ONLY!! (source)

The beer tree

All you have to do is host a party and invite all your fellow travellers / drunk people you met in bars. Now pile up the detritus into layers and – boom! – you have a tree. Even a hungover person can do that! If you don’t have enough bottles, try pilfering some empties from a local bar, because nothing says Christmas like a spot of dumpster diving.

Bottle it up

Bottle it up (source)

Yes you can!

Yes you can! (source)

While we’re on the booze theme you could also try the classic “twig in a wine bottle” approach or a nifty wine cork tree. And now that those bottles are open, you wouldn’t want the contents to go to waste…

Twig in a bottle

Twig in a bottle (source)

Bottoms up!

Bottoms up wino! (source)

The nomad tree

If all else fails, just club together with your fellow travellers and pile your suitcases into a vaguely tree-shape formation. Throw on some candles (because everyone loves wax on their luggage) and a few ornaments and – boom! you’ve got a tree. This won’t look stupid. Honest…

Of course if everybody has vintage luggage that helps a lot..

Of course it helps if everybody has cool vintage luggage…  (source)

Now you’ve got a tree, all you need is ornaments. I’m thinking the titanium spork comes in handy at this point..

Merry Christmas nomads of the world! Ho ho ho (chi minh)!

My attempt at Christmas cheer resulted in one tree the height of a pencil that doesn't even stand up. And now I have a blister on my hand. On second thoughts, who needs a tree??

My attempt at Christmas cheer resulted in one tree the height of a pencil that doesn’t even stand up. And now I have a blister on my hand. On second thoughts, who needs a tree??

2 thoughts on “Christmas Trees for Nomads

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