Tuesday, two weeks removed from our Hackberry tree calamity, B. J. and I were attending our regular Weight Watchers meeting in the hopes of finding some new inspiration to drop pounds when my cell phone rang. On the other end of our wireless connection was our nextdoor neighbor, Ruth Barker. She excitedly announced: “A big limb of our Hackberry tree next to you broke off and fell on your Hackberry tree in your back yard and broke some limbs off it and it is on the top of your house!”
Ruth’s announcement alarmed us more than had Charla Edmundson’s a week earlier. Her statement “…on top of your house” perked us up and got our attention real good. We excused ourselves from Weight Watchers and reined Big Red toward our house. In addition to our abode, our primary concern was “Little Blue” B. J.’s Mustang GT.
Arriving at home, we observed a massive tangle of big Hackberry limbs on top of our house over the carport. However, Little Blue didn’t seem to be ruffled. The tree removers with their saws, hooks and lines had already been summoned by our neighbors and they were hard at work removing the jumbled mess from our beleaguered roof. Georgia Power was on the way. The weather-head and mast and power lines coming into our house, that had been replaced two weeks before when Hackberry No. 1 had come down, were in a shambles again. I hated it. I would have to go through the pain of being without electric power and TV again. I was already getting the heebie jeebies just thinking about it.
Years ago, B. J. and I camped a lot. We have camping equipment galore. So, preparing for the worst, I retrieved my Coleman lantern and one of my gas stoves from the utility room in case we were in for the long haul without power.
Ruth and Greg Barker told us: “We had already planned to have our Hackberry taken down tomorrow.”
What an irony!
I looked in the Bible to see what references I could find about being stricken by falling Hackberry trees. I found floods, earthquakes, falling mountains, drought, famine, plagues, pestilences, sycamore trees, fig trees, weird sea creatures and fire and brimstone but there was no Bible plan to cover a hackberry tree attack.
Buzzzz buzzzz buzzzz went the big saws as the tree people struggled to free our house from the gnarled Hackberry tentacles. Little Blue was safe in her stall. She had traveled over half the USA but she had never seen anything like this. We hoped that a wild falling Hackberry limb did not angle into her stall and injure her. Because the driveway was piled high with debris there was no way to move her.
Without electric power and TV, B. J. and I were anxious onlookers at the mercy of the tree people who were working tirelessly to extricate us from the tangle.
We had planned to have the Edmunsons up for a cookout but without power we had to scratch that. Nevertheless, our friends, the Edmunsons continued to console us.
Just when we were about to lapse into the mulligrubs, I got a text from Charla Edmundson; it read kinda like this: “Hey, whattabout we treat you and B.J. to lunch at the Frederica House?”
In our state of mind with no electricity, no air conditioning and no TV, their lunch offer perked up our spirits. We would meet at the Frederica House on Frederica Road at 11:45 a.m. Time away from the calamity that ensnarled our house and spirits would be good. We always enjoy outings with the Edmundsons.
We refreshed ourselves as much as we could and joined Cardy Edmundson and his lovely daughters Charla and Linda at the Frederica House.
Our host escorted us to a select table (he likes Big Red and he pampers me in the hopes that I will sell him to him).
Seated, Charla smiled big and announced: “We are treating you all today so order up.”
We did. No one seemed to be in a hurry so we enjoyed our food and some quality camaraderie with our friends. Although I could not totally dismiss another night without TV, our tree troubles seemed to wane for a while.