When Your Tree Falls Down

| September 23, 2014

Here’s the gist of what happens when the winds of a freak hailstorm uproot your tree:


  • Your neighbor calls your landlord and says, “So, do you know already?”
  • She does not know already.
  • Your neighbor breaks it to your landlord that a tree is no longer standing in your front yard.
  • Your landlord calls you excitedly and asks, “Do you know about the tree?”
  • You do not know about the tree.
  • You run from window to window to see which tree she’s talking about.
  • Other people in your house start following you around to see what noteworthy thing is suddenly happening off the balcony or out the windows.
  • You spot the tree. It is down.

    Tree, after chopping off the branches

    Tree, after chopping off the branches

  • You run outside to see if it hit a car.
  • It is one miraculous centimeter from the car parked under it.
  • You’re a little disappointed, because you can’t stand all the teenagers parking on your street.
  • Your child and husband stand up at a window gawking at the tree that none of you heard fall down.
  • Your landlord is still on the phone talking about the weather, the tree’s shallow roots, and the tree being too tall for said roots.
  • You and your husband cut off all the branches hanging outside of the fence.
  • Your landlord phones back to let you know the gardener will be there in the morning.
  • In the morning, your landlord arrives.
  • You stand in the yard, staring at the tree, and discuss its shallow roots, the recent freak storms, and how lucky you were that the tree did not hit a car.
  • You discuss the teenagers and their horrendous parking jobs on your street.
  • The gardener arrives. You all start talking about the weather, the shallow roots, and how lucky you were the tree did not hit anything.
  • The gardener begins chopping up the tree.
  • You and your landlord watch while continuing to discuss children, the teenagers parking on your street, and: the tree.
  • The gardener’s supervisor stops by.
  • The gardener’s supervisor and your landlord discuss the shallow roots of the tree, the damn kids parking on this road, and some situation involving your landlord’s neighbor and the police.
  • Your neighbor who called your landlord about the tree stops by and everyone discusses the shallow roots of the tree and how fortunate we were that it didn’t hit one of the cars.

    THE TREE'S SHALLOW ROOTS  (Discuss amongst yourselves)

    (Discuss amongst yourselves)

  • Your landlord and neighbor point out a car parked half on the sidewalk and everyone complains about the teenagers parking on the street.
  • The gardener finishes up and leaves.
  • You return to the house and begin working on something.
  • You let the dog out.
  • Half an hour later, a reminder alarm about picking up your kid at school pops up on your phone.
  • You turn to see if the dog noticed and has begun going nuts for a walk.  The dog is not there.
  • You yell, “FUUUUUCK” and run downstairs to see if the gate is open.  It is open.
  • You continue muttering “Fuck Fuck Fuck” while retrieving your bike and helmet.
  • You circle the region whistling your dog’s personal whistle.
  • You check the school, the dogsitter’s yard, the route you walk your kid to school, and the last three places you found your dog when he got out of the yard.
  • You think about the house with the brown gate and barking dog that your dog goes nuts passing.
  • The people in the house with the brown gate and barking dog are standing out in their driveway.  They have your dog out back.
  • You whistle and your dog runs to you. You ask if he enjoyed his mini-vacation.
  • Your dog has rolled in shit and now it’s on your clothes.
Little Fucker.

Little Fucker.

  • You explain to the women that the gardener was at the house and you forgot to close the gate.
  • You meet the two police officers who are already responding to their call about a found dog.
  • You return home and think your yard looks quite large today.
  • It’s because the tree is gone.
  • Fucking roots.


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Category: In Germany A Broad blog, Shits & Giggles, Uncategorized

About the Author ()

Kari Martindale is a writer and ESL instructor. She’s visited all 50 states and 37 countries, including many of the big cities of Europe and a ton of Christmas Markets. She spends her days straddling the fence between a sense of adventure and a sense of dread. She is married to what is clearly a patient man and has a daughter who, frustratingly, is just like her. Her academic and professional backgrounds are in linguistics and foreign languages. When she's not teaching ESL, she's writing. When she's not writing, she's thinking about her next trip.

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