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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

#sliceof life 2013 #21 of 31 Imagine The Dogwood Tree

Imagine, you "work from home" because you have tree surgeons taking down some very old (over a hundred years old) and very large (over 70 feet tall) trees that were damaged in the hurricane and now lean over your neighbor's yard.   

The trucks arrive and a crew of Spidermen-like beings with ropes, cranes, chain saws, and devices for climbing take over your backyard.  You post on Twitter, "Let the tree-wars begin."  You're working, but it's hard not to watch them do what every child in the world wants to do at one point or another: climb trees effortlessly like a squirrel.  You take another picture and get back to work! 

You hear chain saws starting and stopping, starting and stopping, again, and again.  Finally, you realize the incessant sawing noises coming from the backyard have halted.  You get up to check on the progress assuming the first tree has come down, thinking these Spidermen are pros at what they do.

You quickly realize the entire crew is standing around looking up at the first tree, still standing in all its glory, still leaning over the neighbor's house just like it was before the Spidermen arrived. You decide it's time to head outside and ask the first Spiderman  you see, "What's happening?" just as you notice that three (3) chain saws are laying broken on your lawn.  You're wondering if the Spidermen are going to ask for another swipe of your credit card? 

The boss of the Spidermen comes to you, shaking his head.  "I've heard of this," he says in a bit of disbelief, "but in all my years on the job I have never seen this."  Imagine, you are standing there, still wondering about what "this" is as you watch the entire crew of Spidermen shaking their heads and talking excitedly!


Embedded image permalink"The concrete inside is killing our blades," the boss Spiderman says in a way that indicates he's a bit excited to see tree history but also thinking about additional charges.  You shake your head, what else can you do?  Then, you take another picture, for Twitter, of the concrete falling from the tree as its trunk is lifted out to become a piece of tree history. You can feel the credit card move in your wallet as the tree moves past.  

"What a day." you mutter as you head back to Google "concrete inside of trees" and find that back in the early years of the 20th Century, back when your house was a young-un and belonged to someone else, someone "saved" the trees from decay, squirrels and other varmits by filling them with concrete!  (As noted in the linked article, this is not something that is considered "best practice" in tree surgery today.) 

Over time, the trees grew, majestically shading children at play and families oblivious to what was hiding inside. The concrete, once near the base of the trees, had become one with the tree.  They had grown strong withstanding hurricanes, destroying chain saws, and surprising Spidermen.   "It's time for some landscaping," you mutter, grateful those trees stood the test of time, but looking forward to new lives, in a new century, safely under a new Dogwood tree.      

9 comments:

newtreemom said...

Oh, my goodness! Who knew?

elle1955 said...

I love the way you write in second person in this piece. And use Spidermen throughout. So well crafted.

Donna said...

Wow! Love the writing...and totally confused about the concrete! They did this to living, healthy trees to help them survive? I guess it was good for that tree for a long time...just not good to surprise Spidermen!

Donna said...

Okay I looked it up...so there was a hole that might decay or be home to animals. What a surprise inside! I'd thought you might be able to tell it was there by the wound, but one site said it can grow over and be invisible after a while.

Jackie said...

I have never heard of that. How odd. it is amazing what I learn from reading the posts for the Slice. Your wording made the story flow...and of course, I could picture the Spidermen with their ropes. That is exactly what they look like!! Jackie http://familytrove.blogspot.com/

Tara @ A Teaching Life said...

What a strange practice! We have an enormous oak tree. In our front yard that may need to come down....sigh...here's to hoping that all our tre guys find is wood!

Margie Slusser said...

Wow! What a great story! I love the spidermen description and the emotion. Who would have thought people would pour cement into a tree. At first I thought you were going to say it was petrified and then I would have been really confused:)

Suzanne Ferreri said...

I think you captured someone's excitement and anxiety quite well....Ironically when they cut it down the cross section was in the shape of a heart...a giant concrete heart tree. Now it is a project.

Anita Ferreri said...

I think the heart shaped concrete would be quite a "chapter two" for this story......