Today there was a terrific wind here in Bend, Oregon, with lots of property damage. I was oblivious to all of this and upon arising jumped into a hot bath. My cold treatment of the last couple of days has worked so well the symptoms were barely noticeable. However, I have had experiences over the last twenty-two years with my hot baths technique where I quit taking the two-a-day hot baths when the symptoms had gone away and then the symptoms came back. Anyway, I was lounging in a 106° F bath talking to Debbie when there was a loud crash sound in the house. My first thought was that an overloaded bookcase had toppled over but that seemed unlikely because I had fastened all of them to their respective walls. That’s a common practice back in Berkeley where a major earthquake is long overdue. There is little chance of a big local quake here but still, it seems like a good thing to attach topply things to the wall and it’s an easy thing to do, too.
There are lots of Ponderosa pine trees here in Bend. They are big and beautiful and don’t require much personal maintenance. I have one only eighteen feet from where I am writing this post which we named Moe when we moved into this house six years ago. I measured another one on Google Earth at thirty-six away. We named it Curly because its branches were a little curly. There was another one fifty-one feet away that we named Larry. Obviously, these were our three stooges. Three years ago an arborist checked out Curly and declared him moribund. He had to go – Our sick Ponderosa pine tree comes down. Curly was making tree rings in 1833 but he had the smallest circumference of the three stooges. These trees can grow to over two-hundred feet.
Debbie went into the hall and made a loud yell, which is very uncharacteristic of her. She said a tree had fallen into our living room. I rather slowly began extricating myself from my hot bath and was only beginning to dry off when there was a knock at the door. A neighbor from the other side of our new city park across the street from our house saw a tree fall and immediately came over to make sure we were all right. We were, but I was still standing there behind a wet towel. Embarrassing. But it became apparent that the tree molesting our house wasn’t one of the surviving two stooges. It had come from our neighbor’s yard. We thought that particular tree was sound, as did the arborist who took a sick tree next to it down last year. It was a repeat of our experience.
As this was happening, and I’m not sure of the sequence because the wind was making a lot of intermittent noise and I was indoors, but the tree immediately behind where I am sitting now came down too. It made a direct hit on the house behind me. I just measured in on Google Earth at one-hundred-twelve feet from where I sitting now. Then another behind that house at one-hundred-seven feet from here.
I was standing in the street talking with my neighbors and commenting that our tree Larry seemed to be leaning a bit more than usual even when the wind wasn’t blowing. It was intermittent and gusting to over fifty miles per hour. I said I didn’t think it was a good idea to go into their house for a while. I went inside my house and came back out about a minute later and Larry was down. I didn’t hear it fall and the folks still in the street said it went down slowly. It’s about four feet in diameter and made a huge divot where it been living.
Yesterday weltschmerz, today Ponderosas falling on my head, but they all missed.