At 4:45, someone knocked on the door. It was my next-door neighbor stopping by to deliver this little tidbit:
"One of your tree limbs just fell on my roof."
Uh Huh. Sure 'nough.
It could've been much worse. It could've taken out the neighbors chimney or vent pipe. (See how it landed ALL AROUND THE PIPE??) It could've landed on my car. It could've smashed through the neighbors windows. It could've landed in my BOYS, who play there along the fence on the railroad ties EVERY DAY. We're lucky.
Our friend Walt happened by just in time to help Darren and the neighbor get the limb down. They tied a rope around it, supported its weight with a ladder so that it wouldn't take out the fence on the way down, and pulled with all their might. It was literally tug-of-war. There was much grunting and beating of man breasts when it was over. rofl. Michael came by later with his chainsaw, and was disappointed to have missed all the fun. (The neighbor had cut the branch into manageable logs by then.)
Turns out, the limb was rotten and hollow, but only at the point where it connected to the trunk. The rest of the branch was healthy; Darren's going to use the cedar to build the deck on the boys' playhouse.
The roof may have been slightly damaged - we'll have to wait and see what a roof inspector says about it. But the worst news is the tree. The breakage revealed an even more dangerous problem: the whole main trunk of the tree is hollow and rotten, too.
A stiff wind would send it crashing into my house. It must come down. All 60+ feet of it. And soon. Darren and Michael have grandiose plans for Sunday afternoon. To save costs, they're going to attempt to take some of it down themselves. This scares the holy cannoli outta me. But a professional tree man will cost an arm and a leg, so I'm going to close my eyes and pretend not to see.
(and just 'cause this will make Cara happy: here's her sweet little Brendan, who came along with Paul Bunyon. Er, I mean, his daddy.)