Before we got started, however, Joe pulled out his box call and gave a series of clucks hoping to get a gobble in response. Not today. Should have been here on Sunday morning...Oh. Wait. No hunting on Sundays. (The turkeys are fully aware of this law. Or at least I am convinced they are.)
The hand that was needed was on the end of a rope to assure that the trees didn't hit the house as they came down. Both trees (one white birch, the other a gray birch) were well and truly dead having been either girdled by the previous owner of this lot when he attached a light to the white birch and then held the electric wires in place with some pretty stout nylon cord or damaged when other trees fell and scraped the bark off. Neither could be climbed to attach the rope so we spent some time with a monkey's fist trying to toss the rope over limbs about 20' in the air.
Having accomplished that on the gray birch, I notched the tree about 2' off the ground and made my back cut. Damn tree didn't follow directions and fall up hill as I had planned but instead fell parallel to the slope. At least the rope did keep it away from the house.
The white birch fell pretty much where we planned and the light bulb in the fixture didn't even break. We did dislodge a robins nest built abo0ut where the light fixture was but it didn't hold any eggs or young. In fact, I saw that robin hauling long weeds to build the nest Monday morning and it was still damp from construction.
I gave Joe a tour of my gardens--soon to be supplemented by the acorn and butternut squash Joe brought with him--and he finished his coffee and went on his way after promising to return before I head into the hospital so we can mount the mowing deck on the tractor so, when the time comes, he can come up and cut the grass. He refuses to consider using the push mower.
When Joe left, I pulled out the push mower and went to work mowing the grass and dandelions. An hour-and-a-half later (and about 2 miles) I was finished with the lawns and pretty much anything else for the day. My left knee was sending signals loudly and clearly and my right was in total sympathy.
After lunch I did manage to hobble enough to 1) install the window AC in the master bedroom (I already put the one in the guest bedroom in. It's where I'll be sleeping post op.) 2) drive down to the polling place to cast my vote in the primaries and 3) stop at the liquor store in Mansfield for a nice, big bottle of Jim Beam.
The temperature has risen to 84 on the deck at 3 PM. It had been 82 when I left to run errands at 1:30. The truck thermometer hit a high of 88 while I was on Route 6. It's too damn early for these temperatures. Especially since we had a hard freeze and high temps of just 45 two weeks ago. Oh well. We may get some T-storms this evening...and tomorrow afternoon...and Friday afternoon. Might as well get used to it.
On a little bit of a down note:
Terry and I rounded up the cats yesterday to clip their claws. Things went reasonably well for three of them. (If you count having to close all doors, chase and play hide and seek reasonable.) Miss Kitteh, had other ideas. After a lap or two around the livingroom, diningroom and kitchen, she went up onto the loft. We followed. She jumped off the loft to the couch. We finally corralled her and got her nails done but things weren't quite right. Rather than leave immediately--as the others do--she wanted to cuddle in my lap.
When I put her down near her lunch bowl, she limped away to her bed and stayed there all afternoon. We would spend time petting and prodding her but, while she seemed to enjoy the former, the latter produced no reaction. No broken bones that we could tell.
When terry pulled out the dust mop to do the floors, Miss Kitteh sped off to the basement and wasn't seen again until this morning when I went down and found her huddled in a drawer of the TV stand. She sped up stairs as best she could with a gitty-up in her hitch but still would not eat. She's been curled up on the couch in Terry's sewing room all day. (Except when the noise of the lawnmower had her disappear to the basement again. She hid in the utility room this time.) She purrs and licks our hands when we pet her but she has no interest in roaming about the house or eating.
What ever her problem may be, we will give her another day or two before taking her to the vet.