In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Brainwave.”
We moved to Arizona in 1988. We thought we had jobs lined up but a local recession left us stranded here without employment because of a very high unemployment rate in the area. That was 27 years ago this month that we arrived, right before the holidays which were and are always special to us. We were in financial trouble and Christmas was around the corner.
We worked odd jobs, often through employment agencies, never making the money we were accustomed to but making enough to get by. With Christmas nearing my wife and I explained to our daughter, who was 10 at the time, that we would celebrate and exchange gifts next year. We couldn’t even afford to buy a Christmas tree. We had each other, a roof over our heads and food. We would be alright.
As the holiday drew closer I was almost ashamed to come back to the apartment from my factory job because I felt I failed at providing for my family. With my spirits hanging I entered the apartment on Christmas eve to a sight I will never forget.
My wife the “Mother of invention” took our Christmas lights, some basic ornaments, garland and made a tree on the wall and added some lovely homemade presents for all that she and our daughter put together. It was a wonder of joy. We have had many shared Christmases since but none compare to that first Arizona Christmas Tree. That is one I will remember and cherish forever.