It was a cold, cloudy morning at the end of November. A storm had blown through the neighborhood during the night, but we hadn’t heard a thing (although others did), and this is what Bob saw when he took Gulliver outside for an early morning walk.
The top of one of the very tall oak trees in our back yard had broken off. Fortunately it didn’t fall all the way to the ground, nor did it hit anything on the way down. Instead it broke off and lodged in the branches of another nearby tree. Because the tree top was securely stuck where it had fallen, we had a few days to arrange for a crew to take down the entire tree before it caused serious damage.
So on Saturday morning, the crew arrived and set things up so the tree would (hopefully) fall in the right direction without taking out anything below it (think cars, sheds, bird feeders, bedroom windows, and such). Preparations took a couple of hours, but the actual toppling of the tall tree happened very quickly. To my disgust, I missed the big event. When I heard it crack and start to topple, I grabbed my camera and dashed out, but it had already thudded to the ground, pretty much where the crew had predicted.
Grabbing their power saws, the men cut the part of the trunk and branches that had landed in our neighbor’s yard into sections. We trimmed and moved most of it over onto our property, but at the end of the day, our back yard, including the area I call the “back yard bird buffet,” was still a huge mess of logs, stumps, branches, and twigs.
Family and friends to the rescue!
The next day after church our daughters Becky and Alison, sons-in-law Mike and Marty, and several of Mike’s friends showed up with pizza and landscaping equipment to continue the cleanup job. Mike, a paramedic and lieutenant in the Willoughby Fire Department, sometimes works landscaping jobs with another paramedic. This is the wonderful volunteer crew that spent several hours putting our “Back yard Bird Buffet” back into business.
We can’t thank them enough for the hours they spent that cold Sunday afternoon. We’ve decided to leave the brush pile right where it is for the winter. Because it provides plenty of places to perch as well as protection from the elements and possible hawk incursions, we are seeing a huge increase in bird activity. Take a look…
There you have it: the saga of our fallen tree. As there are still about six more very tall trees out there, I wonder if I should worry every time it storms?