We met Charlie and Lynda a couple of years ago, when we all worked together in Virginia. While we worked at that place, their motor home was parked next to ours. We spent a lot of time off the clock traveling around sightseeing together. It was there in Virginia that we all decided to work at a tree lot together sometime in the future. Well, that day has come.
Charlie and Lynda are managing the lot and we are working for them. Today was our first day on the job. When FabGrandpa and I arrived at the lot, the first delivery of trees had just been taken off the truck and were stacked up like this:
We had to put each one on a stand. You take a green plastic bowl that has a hole in the bottom of it, with a gasket in the hole. Then, you take one of these metal things and push it through the hole. The sharp metal part goes into the trunk of the tree. You take a large hammer and pound it into the tree trunk, then stand it up. While all that pounding is going on, someone takes a measuring stick and measures the tree, and someone writes the height, kind, and price of the tree on a tag and ties the tag to the top of the tree. Then you stand it up.
After the trees are standing up, you take a tree mover and move it where it is supposed to go. We lined them up in rows with all of one kind the same row. I have not bought a live tree since my youngest daughter was about 6 years old (she is now 33), so I have not even been on a tree lot in oh, about 27 years. So, I had never even seen on e of those nifty devices. It enables one old grandma to be able to move a 12 foot tree by herself!! Pretty cool! (That’s Charlie in the picture below. That red thingy with wheels, that is the tree moving device)
When you get the trees all lined up in rows, you fill the green bowl with water, then you have to cut the twine that binds them to remove it, and then fluff out the branches. They pretty much fall into place by themselves, but it is fun to see each one unfold and start to look like a beautiful Christmas tree right before your eyes. (That’s Lynda and FabGrandpa working in the picture below. And YES, I did do some work other than take pictures, thank you very much!)
We had a couple of customers while we were setting things up. You help the customer pick out a tree. When they have decided on THE tree, you put the tree on the mover, and take it over to an area where we have a chain saw, and cut off an inch or tow off the bottom of the trunk so the tree will be able to suck up water better. That makes it stay fresh longer. Then, we do the transaction at the register while someone helps the customer load up their tree. We also offer delivery service for an additional fee.
We have six kinds of trees: Noble Fir, Douglas Fir, Nordman Fir, Grand Fir, Fraser Fir, and Scotch Pines. They range from table toppers that are about 3 feet tall to over 12 feet tall. The huge Noble Firs cost $240!! (Here is FabGrandpa standing beside a big Noble Fir)
Here are me and Lynda by the same tree. The trees are really beautiful and smell so good!
The lot will be open seven days a week from 9:00 a.m until 9:00 p.m. We’ll be working most days, but Charlie and Lynda are living in their motorhome on the lot, so they will not be able to leave until the lot closes on Christmas Eve. We really had fun working today, but don’t want the responsibility of managing the whole thing. I was secretly worried that I wouldn’t be able to do the work, but even though the trees were huge, it wasn’t more than I could do. Having that tree mover thingy was a big help. So, we go back and do it all again tomorrow.