LED lights in the azalea bed

There is a large, oval bed of azaleas between the house and the street and during a brief period each year they bloom red, pink and white. But its December now, and of course they are not blooming. Upper level management finds this thick patch of short green bushes a perfect location in which place to many small Christmas lights. And when I say many, I do mean many. Over the years numerous strings of colorless, white lights have been purchased from different sources to decorate the azalea bed, and of course by now the bushes are illuminated by lights of varying degrees of quality, states of repair, and grades of clarity.

Each year new strings of lights are purchased to replace failing ones or in attempts to correct the serious “there are not enough lights” issue. In recent years LED lights became widely available and management in her practicality decided that converting to LEDs entirely should provide a saving in electric costs. This on its surface seemed like a simple and sound idea, and one that no doubt would pay off in the long run.

Today was the day that the boxes of lights destined for the azalea bed were hauled up from the basement and of course there were some strings of new LED lights added to the pile.  The new LEDs were lights management had wisely purchased last year during the post-Christmas sale period. Soon the untangling, checking for proper functioning, and color sorting had small groups of lights occupying a lot of the floor space on the first floor of a not small house. Management then announced that this was the year that all the outdoor lights were to be of the LED variety and she set about to make it so…..

But there were unforeseen complications as to “making it so” it turned out. In her neatness management had removed any tags from the strings of lights which might have identified them as to what type of light they were. The tags were usually white she explained and as such didn’t fit into her plans for the azalea bed and so snipping them off was both necessary and logical. After no more than two or three hours of studying the lights executive decisions were made as to which ones were be used in the azalea bed. But not just then, you see lights can’t be properly arranged in the azalea bed until after dark.

At this address Christmas lights in the azalea bed are not to be arranged as if on a whim in some hit or miss haphazard manner. They have to be put in place after dark when one can see the effect of the placement and where more or less lights need to be placed. At least that is how I understand the process which I personally try to have as little actual involvement as possible with. Of course working after dark does make it more difficult to find plugs, the ends of strings of lights, or identify potential problems.

This evening shortly after beginning to put the lights in the azaleas, management encountered a hazard because of the darkness. Apparently some large dog had very recently used the azalea bed as a potty room and management wearing her faux leopard skin booties stepped in it. I will describe management’s reaction by saying that no one, no matter what their religious beliefs are, should either use or hear that sort of language during the Christmas season. It’s just wrong, but I wisely didn’t mention it or show any amusement and continued to try to remain invisible and out of range of hurled objects in case something else went wrong.

Well after only a few hours in the bitter cold darkness of arranging and swearing management declared that the azalea bed was decorated but not to her satisfaction. A few of the lights are slightly whiter than the rest and there are spots where there should be more lights but I am certainly not going to mention or agree with anything along those lines nor would I recommend that action to anyone else.

Did I mention that management takes her Christmas lights very seriously?  Anyway, although uncertain as to whether all the lights are of the LED variety, management seems moderately pleased now that her azaleas and the plastic, pink flamingos which are year round residents of the azalea bed are well lit for Christmas. But she did mention adding some lights in the future……

PS: For those that might care, I’ll post pictures when and if it snows.