Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Conversations with Cap Guy

So a young guy comes across the back corner of my yard bearing a chain saw just now. Yes, this made me more than a little nervous. I've been watching them this morning, the workers of destruction. As predicted, Casey is of an ill nature, enough so that she requires extended sleep and a day off. I am working on a photo album job, but I can't tune out the sound of chain saws that have been buzzing on and off for the last hour. My mind is on the work out back. The neighbors tree is on it's side now. Having fallen into their clutches, it didn't stand a chance, and the sounds of its final demise have been stabbing at me so that I almost jump every time they rip into the roots, cutting them to smithereens. The young guy with the cap on had been loitering around the telephone pole at the back corner of our yard every time I looked out. He seemed to be assessing my tree. Fearfully I spied every few minutes from my secret lookout, unable to concentrate on my work. After an hour of this, I got up once more, sensitive to the sound of voices getting closer, and there he was approaching my tree with his chain saw poised to begin an evil deed. Argh! (I think I actually uttered that exact sound.)

I bolted out the door and then slowed down so as not to frighten him and I lilted in a sweet little voice... "excuse me," and I held up a finger like you might do when summoning someone politely. I was trying to avoid the flailing arms and the wretched look in my eye that might make them think they had a whack case on their hands. Even if they do, I figure I should at least try to disguise it a bit in hopes that it will help my case. I said, "You aren't going to take down my tree are you?" I said it in a pathetic little voice, like Cindy Lou Who talking to the grinch. Kind of a "Please Mr., please don't take our tree."

He told me he was going to cut some branches off. At the risk of sounding deaf or stupid, I asked again, for clarity, "But you're not going to tear it down, right?" He replied matter of factly that he wasn't but that he had to get rid of branches hanging in the way of the machines. I was relieved to say the least, but not that easily convinced, so I pushed further, not wanting to take any chances, and made sure he had no intention of cutting off my swing’s branch. "No," he smiled, "we won't." It might have been a condescending smile like "oh brother, here we go" but maybe he was just being nice, I’m not sure. I took a further chance with sounding like I was obsessed with my tree and proposed another scenario, "Now, if I leave thinking my tree is OK, some other guy who thinks differently isn't going to come and rip it out are they?" "No", he said smiling again. Well, what more could I say? I think I beat it pretty well to death. My work was done here so I turned around, satisfied with the outcome and went back into the house where I could fret in private.

Yeah, don’t expect me to quit jumping at every crack, clunk and buzz of the saw. I still plan to run to the window and check on their progress, from out of sight of course. I won’t stand in the yard like the paranoid; I’ll stand at my kitchen window and do it. It affords the best view of my precious tree and swing and ladder. I’m not fully convinced even with “cap guy’s” promise, that they won’t have an accident with that huge lavender back hoe they have out there now. I can just see it barging through and the guy in the cap yelling, “oops!” and looking toward my house with a sheepish look on his face. I’m keeping my eye on those guys. And you probably haven’t heard the last of me on this either.

I just went to get casey some water and much to my surprise, saw my neighbor who lives behind us talking to the workers. They’ve started tearing out his little banana trees and knocked his compost bins over into my yard and he was quietly speaking with them. I know he’s not worried but it did my heart good to at least see him make a showing out there so my concern doesn’t seem so exaggerated. Okay, mine is exaggerated no matter how you look at it. But you know what I mean.

They cut some branches off my tree already while I was typing this and I must say I can’t even tell where they cut them from, but... Oh crud, gotta run, the bobcat is barging past my tree as I type. I think the driver is on speed. He gets this flying start from two yards down and comes at ramming speed past my tree. What's with that? He has to stop at the pile of junk in the corner to pick it up with the claw. Not to be trusted, I tell you. May your day be sewer anxiety-free.

1 comment:

  1. All I can say is that you come off remarkably calm on the phone after going thru such trauma. But then again, you were at Staples when I talked to you and I assume there are no backhoes or chainsaws there to remind you. I know change must come (remember Gardens High is soon to undergo a fate similar to HLWatkins - 2007, I'm told, is the date of it's demise and resurrection in a new form) and I could tell you that trees will grow again, but then I remember Sara Norton telling me about the hacking of yet more trees at Goddard and in my pain (which is not even close enough to see daily), I feel yours. May your backyard remain a haven of filtered sunlight, green leaves, a rope swing swaying in the wind, and may the crackhead speedsters in the heavy equipment move on down the line.


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