Far worse than the sound of leaf blowers in the morning is the combined noise of chain saws, wood chippers, and stump grinders.
Our next door neighbor has four beautiful catalpa trees in his front and side yards and he’s in the process right now of having all four taken down.
I don’t know why he’s suddenly decided to clear cut his property. He’s been living there for seven years. Maybe he’s suddenly got good reasons. The roots are ripping apart his sewer line. All four have rotted out from within at once. Like us, he doesn’t have a real back yard and he wants his kids, who are little, to have what our boys had growing up, an open side yard with a swing set and room to run around in and play games with their friends. Maybe someone in his family has developed allergies. Maybe he just doesn’t like catalpas and plans to replace them with maples or honey locusts. Maybe he’s going to plant an apple orchard.
I could ask him, but it’s really none of my business. Besides we don’t exactly get along. We’ve only spoken a couple of times since he moved in, mainly because I’ve never forgiven him for cutting down a maple tree that was on our property and ripping out the lilacs that lined our back fence on his side but were likely also on our property after we’d discussed it and I showed him the tree was on our property and the bushes were right on the line and we needed to have a surveyor in before he went to work.
So, like I said, he might have good reasons for taking down the catalpas and he really doesn’t need any reason besides that’s what he wants to do, but I’ve always suspected him of being a tree hater and I believe he’s been eyeing those trees with anger and evil designs since he moved in, he’s just finally decided he can afford to have them whacked.
There are tree huggers and then there are tree haters, and I’ve never understood the latter. A friend of mine’s wife shocked him by revealing herself as tree hater when they bought their house and she demanded that the first thing they needed to do before moving in was cut down all the trees in the front and back yards that my friend thought were not only beautiful and property-value enhancing but shaded the yards and the house in a way they would be grateful for every summer. These weren’t junk trees like black locusts or . They weren’t nut droppers. They weren’t silver maples which have a tendency to rot out from the inside and stand there looking perfectly healthy until a strong wind pushes them over on top of your car or house. They were sugar maples. Sturdy, handsome, long-lived, and gorgeously aflame with color in the fall. And my friend’s wife couldn’t explain why she wanted them down except to say she just didn’t like the way they made the place look.
“How’s that?” my friend asked. “Attractive?”
“Woodsy,” she said and shuddered.
What followed from this is that my friend learned that he would never be taking another vacation at a lake in the woods like the ones his family took when he was growing up.
Seashores were also out.
Cruises and casinos and theme parks were fine.
Some people just don’t like trees. Some people don’t like nature at all.
And I don’t get it.