I went to one lot but they were sold out. I drove to another and it looked to be empty too. As I was about to drive off though, I happened to see a tree lying on the ground that was all wrapped up. The lot was behind a little store so I pulled around to the front and asked a man if the tree was for sale.
"We don't have any trees left...sorry, they're all gone for the year." I was confused and wondered what I had seen. Maybe it was a bunch of branches all tied up? It looked pretty big though. I asked if maybe it was a tree that was being held for someone to pick up later. The man was really nice and said, "Hon, I don't think there's ANYTHING back there but I'll go check."
A minute or two later he walked back around and shook his head. "Well, you're right! There's one more back there but it's a big one. Do you know how you would carry it out of here? I'll let you have it for 25 bucks if you want it." (TWENTY FIVE BUCKS?!) If I have to drag the thing on my back it would be worth it. I promised that I would be back, then I waited for Adam to get home.
By now, Adam knows when I'm up to something because he says that I have some look in my eye - when he walked through the door that night, he just shook his head and said, "What is it?" I told him to get in the car as the kids ran past him. "Wait until you SEE IT Daddy! It's HUGE!" Adam shot a nervous look at me. I explained what happened on our way to the tree lot but he kept saying, "For 25 dollars, it can't be that big of a tree."
As we pulled into the empty lot...there it was. Adam slowly turned to look at me and muttered, "You have GOT to be kidding." With the headlights shining on it, it looked even bigger. The kids began to scream and I kept smiling saying, "Isn't it amazing?" "Amazing? Beatty, this thing won't even fit in our HOUSE! I seriously don't even know how we're going to get it on top of the car!"
I asked if he wanted to call our neighbor Matt for help, but for some reason, Adam hates to ask people for help. Taking his work shirt off and sizing the tree up he whispered, "I'll do it. It will be fine."
He bent down in his t-shirt and khaki pants to lift it off the ground. Getting it all the way up to his left shoulder, he gasped out, "Call Matt".
Matt arrived in a little while and the two guys gave it a try. The tree still wouldn't budge. I ran into the little store where I found two other men who happened to be there and they were willing to help. Between the four of them, the crazy huge Griswold tree was loaded on the top of our car and tightened down. We got it home and measured it at 14 feet. The branches at the base stretched out to be over eight feet across.
Adam tried to hand saw through the tree from about five feet up so he could carry the top half in the house. Another neighbor ended up coming outside with a chainsaw to help with the rest.
Our 25 dollar humungo tree turned out to be fun for the family and neighborhood - with plenty of branches for decorations and wreaths to go around.
After everything was said and done, it taught me a good lesson in life...if you look for something with true intentions, you just never know what adventures you might find...even if that adventure only ends up being 25 dollars...well, 25 dollars and a whole lot of tree sap.