At around 0800 this morning, I was planning a lazy day of hiding indoors where the AC would mitigate the expected 106F sizzle. I had no
intentions of going anywhere outside today without a damn good reason, and once the mercury hits triple digits, those are pretty hard to come by. So, whilst typing away at something surely meaningless here at my desk, and had just glanced out the window. Seeing that all was well, and the Parks crew had arrived and was cleaning up after yesterday's
er ... citizens/park users. All was basically well with the world, even though it was already over 82F out there.
As I glanced back toward my screen, I heard an unaccountably loud crack outside, and looked out the window again, just in time to see a huge hunk of a grand-daddy oak tree hit the ground over at the park pavilion with one helluva wham. Needless to say, I hit the door at a dead run. Several tons of live oak had just come down exactly where these guys usually park their truck when they work.
By the time I made it across the street, I could see both guys standing under the pavilion canopy, looking stunned, but otherwise unhurt. Having a way with understatement, the youngest of the two looked at his companion and said, "Well. That sucks. Glad we moved the truck."
So, no panic, no harm, no foul, unless you count the two or three days it's going to take to finish felling the monster, or the death of the tree itself.
And as usual ... pictures ...
Right after it came down:
A very lucky Chevy:
The reason it came down:
The business end of the bough that fell:
Limbing out the other side:
They got most of it down and hauled off today. The remainder of the trunk still stands, although it's rotted hollow all the way down the middle, and probably into the roots. Monday is soon enough to drop that part. The weight is off, so the danger is mostly mitigated. In all likelihood this monster was actually killed back in 2000 when a winter ice storm took the tops out of a number of these old oaks. Once the tops were broken, their fates were sealed. Since then, they've hollowed out, and one by one, have succumbed to the ravages of time, rot, bugs and stifling summer heat.
Seems like somewhat of an ignominious end to a life that survived floods, droughts, both the first major fire in Paris, and then the big one of 1916, then endured the tornado in 1982 that levelled so much of the town.
I'd hate to have to try to count the number of birthdays, anniversaries, reunions, proposals, piñatas and gatherings of family, friends, sweethearts and the general happy mayhem of children running, laughing and shouting beneath the shade of its sheltering branches over the span of a century and a half.
I saved a couple of big hunks of it. Not sure what I'm going to make with them yet, but I sure hope it will be something more befitting and enduring than the fate of the rest of it. That being the grinder over at the municipal public mulch pit.
So ... that was my Friday. What's happening in your little corner of the world this weekend?