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Chapter 7 – Tinseltown Holiday – Part I
It’s coming on Christmas
They’re cutting down trees
They’re putting up reindeer
And singing songs of joy and peace
Oh, I wish I had a river
I could skate away on….
But it don’t snow here
It stays pretty green
I’m going to make a lot of money
Then I’m going to quit this crazy scene…
I wish I had a river
I could skate away on
I wish I had a river so long
I would teach my feet to fly
Oh, I wish I had a river
I could skate away on…
-Joni Mitchell –The next two weeks were very busy for Tina. She was working extra hours in preparation for the one-month holiday production hiatus. Her days were spent juggling one episode in principle photography, another in post-production, two scripts in rewrite, and yet another awaiting her final approval. With nothing in pre-production due to the holiday this was actually a fairly light load. However, issues with storyboarding, props, costuming, budgeting for special effects, and hiring a new director added to her daily schedule. The busier the better as Tina remained preoccupied with thoughts of Bette.
There was a time when Tina loved the holidays. She could not wait for the season to begin and found she was sad when it was over. This Yuletide she found herself listening to the 24/7 Christmas Music Radio Station at work and watching Countdown to Christmas on Hallmark when trying to unwind at her apartment. But beyond that she would be lying if she said she had any Christmas spirit. In fact, that part of her that began celebrating at Thanksgiving and continued through the New Year, was now neatly packed away with the no longer used ornaments and decorations. Carrie had talked her into a table top tree the previous year but Tina wanted absolutely nothing this season.
Tina’s growing preoccupation for maudlin Christmas songs resulted in Sally begging for mercy and telling her boss that she wished SHE had a river she could skate away on. “Tina, and I say this with all due deference in my position as your loyal employee as well as an expression of love as your friend: Joni Mitchell would not mind one bit if you took a little break with, oh I don’t know, maybe a little ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.’” Tina stared blankly at Sally. Nothing would shake her doldrums. Tina’s end of year reflection? Professionally? She was thriving. On the top of her game. Couldn’t be better. Personally? There was a wedding on the horizon. But God help her she was beyond confused. Beyond miserable. Tina’s confession to Peggy had brought all of her regrets and insecurities front and center.