Completely un-food related, but such a memorable experience that I had to share!
This is Stumpy. He’s been a fixture in my yard for a year now. Sort of like an unwelcome relative who’s overstayed their welcome, Stumpy has been cluttering the corner of my front lawn, constantly reminding me of just how badly I wanted him gone.
This week was it. I decided Stumpy and I finally had to go our separate ways. My lawn needed to be a place of joy, serenity and a lack of stumps, so I started digging stumpy out.
It was a long process and was progressing little by little and day by day. My boys and I would dig, chop and muck for an hour or two, satisfied in the knowledge that Stumpy was just a little closer to gone. I was at it again on Friday morning, about 40 minutes in, and at the three-quarter finished mark when something randomly wonderful occurred.
A delivery driver with a massive forklift stopped in front of the house and offered to give stumpy a boost. Mind you, this was happy news to the sweaty guy with axe in-hand who was whacking away at yet another huge root. Even if the man only got the tree a little looser, life would be a LOT easier, so I said sure!
I mean really; How often does someone with a very expensive piece of equipment stop and offer to help you with a really nasty project out of the kindness of their heart, at no cost, when they should just be getting back to the office? It isn’t an offer I’m going to pass up.
So massive forklift met massive tree in a fairly epic battle. For a few minutes it looked like Stumpy would come out the winner, but he eventually succumbed to the sheer might of the two-tined tree killer. But not without getting some measure of vengeance on us for the audacity of clearing him out. He took my water main with him.
The driver, who was terribly and reasonably mortified at having rendered my home water-less, also happened to work for a home improvement store. He kindly offered to provide all supplies needed to repair the issue at no cost. I could be angry, but there was the fact that I was now stump-less and that had the tree not been pulled it would have eventually caused greater damage on its own, so off to the store for pipe and connectors I went.
So this Father’s day weekend has been all about those responsibilities that come with having a home and a family. Digging trenches, laying pipe and gaining new appreciation for the fact that I’m over 20 years older than I was the last time I worked this hard in a day. Stiff, sore muscles, a lot of sweat and not a little blood and tears have gone into the weekend so far.
I’m not complaining. My kids jumped in and helped, my neighbors offered their assistance, tools, sweat and support. We had a pretty good time considering the gravity and immediacy of the problem and at the end of the day, all was once again well with the world and my water supply.
Yes, there’s still a big trench to fill in, but that can wait until tomorrow. The shower and toilet had to be fixed this morning due to debris in the water line. (Funny how getting a tree torn through a pipe will do that.) All is working once again. I get to pat myself on the back for having a little DIY talent and I think the kids deserve a treat for helping out so well.
In the end, Stumpy will be hauled off in the not-too-near future, the hole in the yard will be filled and I never have to worry about that particular tree doing damage to property again. My neighbors and I are just a little more neighborly and I hope they know that if they have a problem and I can help, all they have to do is ask.
So Farewell Stumpy. You evil $!%. You will most definitely not be missed.