Here's to the single best Christmas tree
Sunday after church and a quick stop at Longs
for toothpaste and bribery loot (I had the girls with me), my daughters talked
me into going to get the Christmas tree right then.
"But we were going to go this afternoon, after
Daddy gets home," I reminded them. "Don't you think Daddy will be
disappointed?" I pulled that last question off without so much as a smirk,
though inwardly I was guffawing and making all manner of donkey
"Let's surprise Daddy!" they proposed. "We can
hide the tree and jump out with it when he gets home!"
Yeah, that'll happen.
"Okay!" I agreed.
After a quick stop at the ATM to extract the
approximate Gross National Product of Albania, we headed for the high
This year the Orland High School FFA are selling
Christmas trees for a fundraiser. I'm happy to support the FFA, especially if I
don't have to buy a live steer to do it, and besides, I thought (hoping against
hope), the trees might be a little less expensive than the commercial tree
It truly was a fundraiser, but I didn't mind.
But I have never had such great service while picking out a tree! While looking
for a 4-5' noble fir I was told by one young man that they were all sold out of
that size. Bummer. I walked three feet further and was approached by a teenage
girl who has a great future in sales. "How can I help you today?" she asked,
and her steely gaze and forceful tone told me that "just looking" would NOT be
an acceptable answer.
"Oh, well, we were looking for a 4-5' tree, but
I hear you're all sold out --"
"Got one right here -- my last one," she said,
reaching behind the tree to cut its tether in one devastatingly efficient
motion. Swwoosh, PLUNK! And like a no-nonsense Vanna White the girl put the
tree right in front of me, spinning it on its trunk for optimum viewing. Well,
it was a pretty tree, even if it had a crook in the top and was a little patchy
on one side . . .
"SOLD!" I screamed.
"Great, now which way is your car?"
"Oh, I forgot -- you think it'll fit in my trunk
all right?" I asked timidly.
"I'll make it fit," she said confidently, and
suddenly I knew she would. I was a teeny bit frightened.
After I shelled out $40, plus another $5 to the
adorable child selling Girl Scout chocolate stuff, the super-efficient young
high school woman hefted that tree to my car and into my trunk, gave me some
twine for a tie-down, and sent me on my way. No fuss, no muss, no tears from
the kids (although I came pretty close once), and we went bumping down the back
roads toward home with a tree sticking out of our rear end.
All this in about fifteen minutes. A bargain at
twice the price.
We hid the tree in the trunk, right by the
laundry room door. Daddy found it, just like I knew he would.