It was his idea. The trees were in the woods, in Saunderstown, right there off the road, just a short walk. No one will ever notice. He said.
A sucker for a mischievous adventure, I was easily convinced that this was just the daring heist for me. Are you certain we won’t get caught? What if some farmer with a rifle sees us? My reply.
Oh, come on Nance, nothing like that’s going happen, nobody owns the property. It’s an old Boy Scout Camp.
Okay then, count me in, let’s go!
He drove. A cold December afternoon, lightly snowing, enough to make it feel like Christmas time.
We can park here, on the side of the road, no one will notice because we won’t take too long. Only a short walk into the woods.
I’ll follow you Chris.
He grabbed the hand saw and away we went. I in my boots and mittens, he in his gloves and chukkas. There was no path, only random wanderings.
Here they are!
Wow Chris! It’s true, you were right, so many trees! How do we choose?
Let’s take this nicely shaped one over here. Not too big, not too small, just right.
Okay, you cut it down while I be the lookout.
It sure is a beauty right Nance?
It sure is Chris. Hurry I’m getting cold.
You grab the back, I’ll take the front. Let’s go fast. It’s starting to get dark.
Let’s tie it up nice and tight to the roof then what do you say we stop at Heffie’s for some hot cocoa and a burger and fries?
Hot cocoa and a burger at Heffie’s? Nothing could be better.
And so we did. My brother Chris and I. With our lifted Christmas tree atop the car roof for all to see, we parked on Boston Neck Road in Saunderstown, RI at Heffie’s Restaurant. We ordered the best burgers and fries and hot cocoa this side of “the bridge”. Youth is kind; over ketchup aplenty, salt galore, ice cream and hot fudge to top it all off, we talked about the tree and chuckled at how we’d gotten away with it. We talked about how the family would like the tree. We talked about some small stuff, like his boat, my new job, his new job, we didn’t talk much at all really. We didn’t have to. He was Chris. My brother, sixteen months my junior with a twin sister and one a year younger than that. We didn’t need words. We had each other.
He is Chris, my brother.
The years passed of course. Chris has helped me through some of the most difficult times of my life. Some of which he didn’t entirely understand. Yet, he was there.
Adversity spares no one it seems and he has experienced some difficulties himself. Some minor, some more challenging. He is fortunate to have a loving, supportive wife and network of friends. Yet, he is Chris, my brother
and I love him like no other.
To you Chris, my brother.
I want you to know that
I am here for you
Time is speeding
days fly by
let’s not waste another.