To be fair, we didn’t mean to steal our Christmas tree. It wasn’t like we went out with the intention of celebrating the joyous season of giving and love by committing acts of theft and villainy, but if you have ever tried to do anything with my mother, you know that things generally do not go as planned.
I was a teenager of some sort, 14 or 15 maybe, and we (by which I mean my mother of course) had decided to go out and chop down our own Christmas tree. December had arrived, and we were ready to take some money and exchange it for a tree. Not knowing what to expect at the tree farm, we piled into the car with our own saw and twine and headed out, ready to
commit a felony make some magical holiday memories.
When we got to the tree place, or at least what we assumed was the tree place, there were no other people around. What luck! We had managed to avoid the crowds! There was a big old farmhouse as I recall, and possibly a sign that said Christmas trees, although I’m a little fuzzy on that point as this was many years ago now. My siblings and I suggested to my mother that perhaps we ought to find someone and ask what to do, but she did not think that this was necessary. We could clearly see many Christmas tree shaped objects growing out in the forest. Why did we need to ask anyone anything?
So off we went, galumphing through the snow and into the forest, looking for the perfect tree. Again luck was on our side, as there were a great many trees available. We had our pick of any tree out there! We didn’t see any prices, or roped off areas or anything, so of course we assumed that this would all be worked out later. A few minutes of sawing later and our tree was down, ready to be dragged back and tied onto the car roof.
Now, at this point the tree was cut and tied, and there really wasn’t any way to, you know, put it back, so when we continued to see nobody around, what were we supposed to do? My mother went up to the big farmhouse and knocked on their door, but nobody answered. I guess they were not home. And there were no signs with tree prices of any kind. What kind of a business was this?! And were we even at the right address? There was no way to know. So we left. With the tree. And our money.
I don’t know if it’s really in the Christmas spirit to be opening presents that have been left under stolen property, but we made do that year, and we never stole another tree again, as far as I know. Although, my mother does keep claiming that she wins Christmas tree contests every year and that her trees are always free. Hmmmmmm. Well, at least she didn’t climb down anyone’s chimney to get their tree, and I’m pretty sure she’s never stolen any roast beast or Who-Hash, so I suppose things could have been worse. Right?