The boys of the Puddlegulch Volunteer Fire Brigade responded on the evening of December 9 to the home of Marietta Marson, widow of the late Henry Marson for report of a fire in the living room. Upon arrival, a fire was indeed found! The source of the blaze was found to be the newly purchased Christmas tree from the Marlo’s MegaMart in Taylorfield which Widow Marson had set up the day before. Gregory Fiddlestone and Joe Whistler put aside their differences over their much talked about collision at Possum Hollow and Main long enough to extinguish the blaze.
“I always wanted that Norman Rockwell feel to the house at Christmas time,” said Widow Marson. “And to me, that means having a picturesque tree next to a blazing hearth. But Henry never wanted that with a live tree because he thought it would be a fire hazard; we always had to put the tree out in the barn and spend Christmas morning shivering in our wraps with the goats and Henry’s ‘pet’ possum Toothy. What with Henry gone now, I reckoned I could get one of those fake trees from Marlo’s that’s easy to assemble and be able to put it where I’ve always wanted it.”
But an artificial tree is still subject to the perils of fire, Puddlegulchians. It doesn’t matter what kind of tree you put up or how easy it is to assemble, if it’s too close to the fire, it’s going to go up along with your Norman Rockwell dreams. It’s just a matter of how long it takes. Best to keep your tree away from any heat source, and if it’s a real tree, keep it watered.
I salute Henry Marson for his extraordinary dedication to fire safety. Would that we all celebrated Christmas in our barns, much like Joseph and Mary did.
In the immortal words of local celebrity author, Chuck Hassler, in his thrilling debut novel Colt Hardcastle & The Persimmon Hill Posse, “Fire takes no friend and respects no tree.”
Fire Chief Red