Saturday, June 14, 2014

Trimming the trees

It's the rainy season and one of the things that I fear every rainy season is the typhoon felling our trees on someone else's roof. This almost happened a couple of years ago, and I guess the trees were not that grown yet so all it did was lean. I was able to correct the trees and save them from felling by tying a rope around them and with the help of the neighbors pulled them up and put braces around them.                                                   
I have since then tried to trim our trees regularly. I used to pay a neighbor to do this but he did it the wrong way. He cut branches without any care as to where the branches would fall and this worried me especially since there were electric cables near the trees. This time, to save money and to do it my way, I did it myself.   



I sharpened my itaks. This was one of the things I learned from my father. I also prepared a rope and a ladder.  I am not as light and as nimble as I used to be, so for safety I lashed a branch to the trunk so that I could have a foothold.   I checked if it could hold my weight, and it did.  

Lashing was one of the skills that I had learned from the Boy Scouts. So, encourage your children to join the scouting movement.   
          
I am afraid of heights, one of my phobias. I am still scared of it but I guess seeing that no one else would do this job, I overcame it. While on top of the tree I kept repeating Epictetus' words: "it's not the things that bother you, it's what you think of them that does." And actually (there's that darned word again), it's not that high, about twenty feet or so.

I guess this is why Epictetus' philosophy helped an American Vietnam war hero to survive as a prisoner of war for seven and a half years. Epictetus writing was studied and was made the basis for a theraphy, the cognetive behavioral theraphy. One of the most effective according to articles and the premise is so simple:“you largely feel the way you think.” 

So, it's all about using your reason, which we all have, to defeat or control most of the irrational beliefs that we have that in turn controls how we feel. Anyway...


     

After a few minutes of hacking, the apex or the topmost part of the tree was finally felled. It was scary because it was heavy and I had to make sure it would fall into our property and not into our neighbor's electric cables and roof.


My hands and arms were shaking from the effort. I was so spent that I had to rest for about ten minutes before I was able to come down from the tree.


More work. I had to chop the branches into smaller parts so that I could pile them up in a heap and burn them when weather permits.

Of course, it's not yet finished. I'm not that young anymore and I tire easily, so next weekend again.


                      

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