October 22, 2013
Goodbye Beautiful Tree
My once beautiful Tulip Poplar tree is gone. After a long and arduous campaign with the City of Bellingham, they have removed the tree at their expense which is going to exceed $10,000 after repaving the street, driveways and sidewalks.
First they sent out a crew to break up the concrete and blacktop so that the contractor could get into the roots around the stump. Then, last week, Henifin's crew came to remove the tree. It was an all-day project. They were amazing considering some of the tree was over my garage. They used a huge lift that, straightened out, just topped the highest branches. A large backhoe picked up the debris that was deposited in many, many very large trailers hauled off, one right after another, from the closed-off street. They began at 8:00 a.m. and finished that evening after 9:00.
I'm posting lots of pictures which can only remind me of the excitement all day. Keith and Eulalah were here, Allie was here, Dani and Nico were here -- and I could not do one thing other than take pictures and mourn the demise of a tree that (the person who wielded the saw told me) was over 110 years old. The cutter said he had done this since he was a teen and he knew his trees.
Unfortunately, for the city, they should have let us take it down when it began it's destruction of the sidewalks and street (as well as our sewer system which we had to reroute because of the invasion). But, alas, they did not and over the ensuing years they dug massive holes right in front of it to fix the neighbors sewers -- leading to the tree's demise. Every section of the tree including both arterial limbs and the main trunk showed signs of dying. I'm fortunate that it didn't have longer to live and take out part of my house.
But, it is still sad to lose such a grand old lady -- one that has stood as a sentinel to guard this lovely home on Bellingham Bay. Oh, the stories it could tell! Goodbye, lovely lady!
The Next Three Pictures are the First Cutting of the Lower Branches
Large Limbs Showing Interior Damage
The Foggy Foggy Dew
I remember telling Don once that it seemed strange that it was never foggy in Bellingham. Well, I've been proved wrong this past few weeks. Over the past ten years, we have had occasional fog. But, this past few weeks has been fogged in every morning, and often all day. What is happening? Why would I even remember if we never had fog? If you lived in my house, you would know. Fog means that the bay disappears. In the first ten years that we lived here, it never ever happened. This morning it is all mist and no view.
On another note, I have a funny true story of last night's trip to the Olive Garden. My friend, Nancy, and I go to Weight Watchers every Monday at 5:00 and follow it up to a trip to get one of the restaurant's lighter fare meals. Last night we ordered the Capellini Pomodoro which is simply Angel Hair pasta with tomatoes. We also added shrimp. After eating my salad and Nancy's soup, we waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, the waitress apologized because they had run out of the pasta and had to make a whole new batch. I didn't know why the extremely thin Angel Hair would take so long -- even to make a new batch from scratch -- but we said, OK. Next thing we knew, the manager was at our table apologizing and saying he would comp one of the meals.
The pasta arrived with a new server and -- no shrimp. So, we sent her back to the kitchen for the shrimp. Waitress came over -- "I didn't hear shrimp." Manager came over and again apologized and said he would comp both our meals. We waited for the shrimp. After finishing our pasta (which we ate slowly waiting for the shrimp), I finally said to Nancy, "I think we are not getting the shrimp." The waitress came to fill our water glasses and we said, "We still didn't get our shrimp." She indicated that the manager had taken over our order and she had no idea why that happened.
Again, the manager came to see us. He took full responsibility, said he was working with the waitress to figure out how this could be avoided in the future, and left two gift certificates for $20 in both our hands. We just rolled with the punches since we enjoyed our evening of visiting -- except for the fact that the restaurant got so cold that we had to don our jackets in the middle of the meal. Talk about Comedy of Errors!
I must say that we told the manager that we come to the restaurant every Monday evening which is why he probably tried to appease us. He was a bit over the top with his antics trying to be "hale fellow well met." And, actually, Nancy and I really go there to visit and because it is just down the street from where we weigh in. But, we got a free meal both this week and next -- so I can't complain.