I'm seriously going to put this story in a movie one day.
So my family and I started a tradition during Christmas of '06 in which my parents, my brother John & sister-in-law Kristin, my niece Karis and my nephew Toby go cut down a Christmas tree. The first time, I felt like I was 10 years old again, my mom got some great photos...all in all it was a great day that went off without a hitch.
This time...well, let's just say this time was a little more interesting.
This year, we arrive at the Christmas tree lot and start wandering around, looking for a nice hearty tree. We find a lower lot in which the selection of trees is far superior, so we proceed to walk down the hill to said lower lot...all except for my dad. HE decides he's going to drive his little pickup down the hill and meet us there. Fine. Great! Don't have to carry the tree up the hill.
So having found the perfect tree, we all start wondering where my father might have gotten off to. It's been about 15 minutes and no sign of mi padre.
At which point, my brother, with just the slightest tint of annoyance in his voice, points out, "I don't know if this is gonna alarm anyone else, but that sure sounds like a truck spinning it's wheels in mud."
Excellent. I listen. And he is unmistakably correct. I walk over to the source of the noise, and lo and behold, there's my father, attempting to reverse up a muddy hill and having absolutely no luck in doing so.
Next thing I know, I'm jumping up and down on the back of the pickup, attempting - with very, very little success - to give the wheels some traction.
Ten minutes later, after apparently complaining to everyone else, "I really don't wanna go over there," along comes my brother to help out, followed by Kristin - both of them looking slightly non-plussed over the whole situation. They're carrying tree branches. These supposedly will provide the traction we need to get the car out! At this point, things are just getting ridiculous.
This is getting a bit long-winded, so I'll try to cut it short. Basically, the scene ended up looking something like this: Kristin and myself on the back of the truck, attempting to hold down the back wheels, my dad in the driver's seat, and John literally lifting up the front of the truck, just asking to be run over. Meanwhile, my niece and nephew are somewhere at the top of the hill, and my mom, in between taking candid photos of the whole debacle, is basically just shaking her head, hoping that her husband doesn't kill one of his sons. Finally, my mom totally comes through in the clutch and finds some roof tiles in an abandoned shed along the side of the road. I'm not kidding. You can't make this shit up! The roof tiles provide the traction we need to get the truck up most of the hill. And just when we're stuck on the last little hump we need to get over, my niece (5 years old, mind you) finds the guy who runs the tree farm and tells him, "Yep, they're stuck down there. In the mud." She's freakin' awesome.
So the guy comes down in his truck and extricates us from the situation. Crisis averted. No sons dead.
And you know, what, not to get all preachy again, but that's the biggest memory I'm going to take away from my holidays this year. Sure, I appreciate all of the gifts that people gave me, but what I'm really going to remember about the whole thing is how our stomachs hurt from laughing so hard after this whole debacle. Sure it was ridiculous and my dad was quite the dumbass for driving down a muddy hill in his two-wheel drive pickup. But it made for one of the better memories I have of any holiday. And that's honestly what matters to me.
Now I'm gonna go take some photos with my sweet new camera.