On Wednesday morning April 30th, Marci and I woke up to discover that our giant 100-year-old (or more) eucalyptus tree in our back yard had fallen down. We assumed it must have fallen during the night, although we didn’t hear a thing. Turns out it fell down sometime during the day before and we just didn’t notice it the night before. One of our neighbors told us it went down around 10am on Tuesday and it made plenty of noise.
The tree is (was) over 150 feet tall and very bushy. Apparently there was some root rot going on and the tree just couldn’t stand up to the wind storm that we had on Tuesday (“Santa Ana” winds). Fortunately, the tree fell away from the house, but it landed squarely in our swimming pool. It crushed the shed containing all our pool equipment and demolished most of the landscaping in our back yard.
I tried to climb up on the fallen tree just to assess the damage and ended up falling into the tree and cutting my leg badly. I went to urgent care and got it stitched up and decided to call in some professionals to see if they could remove the tree.
Two weeks and several thousand dollars later, our barren back yard looks like a bomb went off back there … but at least the tree is gone and I can get to the pool which is now a mosquito-breeding swamp. I’ve called some expert pool people to help me clean it up. It is really a mess.
When I was finally able to get into the pool shed, I discovered that all the pool equipment was destroyed completely as I expected, but a stack of plastic lawn chairs survived. I removed them from what was left of the shed and put them on the concrete deck next to our swamp. “We can save these chairs, at least,” I thought to myself.
Not more than two hours later, I was in the house when I heard another crashing sound in the back yard. I ran out and discovered that a large branch from another eucalyptus tree (which had been sideswiped by the first tree) had fallen to the ground … right on top of those plastic lawn chairs. I have to admit … that made me laugh.
So, I am learning … more and more these days … that you can’t get too attached to your possessions or your money. God gives and he takes away. All things are in his hands and no matter what happens, we can always give thanks. Right how we are just so thankful that the tree didn’t fall towards the house.
If you would like to see some more photos of our “great tree disaster,” click here.
August, 2015 — Our son Nate looked up our house on Google Earth (a year and a half later) and this is the screenshot that he found: