DAY 361


DAY 361
TREE 189

I did not feel good when I woke up this morning.  No, make that afternoon.  I guess I partied a little too hard with Will, Charlotte, and LeighAnn last night.  I also completely forgot that I told Michelle I’d meet her at Zephyr at noon to help hang her show.  Of course, she called me to tell me she’d be late but I felt so bad I didn’t know when I was going to be able to help.  I soon figured that out.  The drive back to Will’s in his back seat was awful.  My heart felt funny, I was nauseated and starting to sweat.  I struggled out of the car and knew something bad was about to happen.  I walked quickly over to a trash can, opened the top, and leaned over.  I won’t get into the details but it made me feel so much better.  I went up to Will’s apartment, had some water, a little mouthwash, and I was ready to go.  I wasn’t 100% but good enough to get on ladders and crouch low on the floor.  Plus, keeping busy kept my mind off any lingering discomfort.  

After helping Michelle I walked back to Will’s and spent the rest of the afternoon and evening with him and Natalie.  Then I felt like the bad guy for asking Will to take me to my truck at Charlotte’s place.  He obliged and once there I stopped in to see how she was doing.  I guess last night caused more than hangovers.  Both her and Will were depressed today.  And who knows about LeighAnn? I didn’t even talk to her.  

I said goodbye, got in my truck and drove back roads to a middle school off 146 in Crestwood.  I pulled into the campus and parked on the side lot.  



This is the tree I had first climbed after Christmas shopping with my brother, Scott.  I got out of the truck and the cool day had turned into a very nice warm night.  A storm must’ve been on its way.  I walked up to my tree and looked for the overhanging limb to climb up. It was skinnier than I remembered and looked as though it would break under my weight. I reached up and grabbed the end and bent it down.  It moved and bended with such ease I was amazed it held when I put all my weight on it.  But it held before.  So up I went with just slight trouble on the slippery, wet bark.  The little, thin limb became thicker and stronger as I climbed in towards the trunk.  I turned my body around and climbed up on the branch and then to my feet.  



From there to the very top to my ribbon was a good climb with no difficulties.  



The night was just so pleasant.  I took pictures



and collected my pink ribbon



then crouched down in the small branches at the top to sit and enjoy the experience.  My phone rang and it was Michelle calling to tell me when she finally finished her installation and to see how I was doing.  I told her I was in a tree and felt great.  And I really did.  Any residual hangover had vanished within the branches of this tree.  It’s my cure-all.  

I was talking to my friend Rickey once about a troubled friend.  He asked if I would take her to climb a tree to make her feel better.  He referred to it as "taking to tree."  I thought that was a perfect name for that action.  To cure oneself by climbing a tree: taking to tree.  

Anyway, my conversation with Michelle ended and I sat for a few minutes longer until my butt began to go numb.  I climbed back down, hung from the first skinny limb and dropped to the ground.  I just couldn’t believe how good I felt after the day I had.  


3-31-09:  Taking to Tree.  Perhaps it also makes me feel better because I wait till later in the day to climb on those hang over days when I am already starting to feel better.  I think it’s a little bit of both.  All I know is that I love to climb trees.

March 30th 2009.  Yesterday!!!  (I can’t believe I finally caught up!  Now only 4 entries left before the end of the Daily blog and a total 730 days of tree climbing in a row.)

A few months ago Norman’s nephew, Silas, had a birthday party and had invited me to come.  I gladly came to celebrate his 4th year of life with food, cake with a Star Wars theme.  I believe I was the only non-family there.  Well, Silas’ little sister, Marietta whom they call Teddy, had her birthday yesterday.  They celebrated at Polly’s Freeze off state road 62 in southern Indiana.  She asked her parents and Norman if Mr. Todd could come.  She’s turning 3 and she asked for me and called me Mr. Todd.  How could I pass up an invitation like that? 

Just before 6pm I left home and drove to Polly’s Freeze.  I was, of course, early and the first person there.  I waited and soon they all showed up.  I ate a Polly Hamburger with everything, onion rings, and a coke.  Teddy opened some gifts and we sang to her.  But Norm and I were still hungry so we both got a corn dog and chili dog.  Then Norm’s mom asked me what I wanted for dessert.  I got a Heath Flurry (think DQ Blizzard) and I was full.  I was considering climbing a tree next to the building but by the time I finished all that food I was way too full.  I need a few minutes to digest.  But by that point every body was rushing home.  I wished Teddy happy birthday one last time then went on my way. 

I figured I was close to the Mount so I’d climb there.  I pulled in the drive and parked at the first little lot on the left. 



I saw a tree just ahead of me in the distance and was drawn to it. 



But before I could get there, I ran into Jim Brodfherer and his wife.  We caught up a few minutes and then I headed to the tree. 

When I got close I saw that I was going to have to use a small tree growing just next to it. 



Both were covered in vines.  It was going to be a challenge but I was looking forward to it.  I used the thickest hanging vine to climb up to the first branch on the small tree.  I climbed up another branch to the point where I could transfer to the big tree.  There I saw a broken branch with sap in the split wood fibers.  Just like the tree in a recent entry, I was surprised to see the amber colored sap in a hardwood tree. 



I took a picture this time for evidence and a few others of my view up



and down. 



Then I transferred to the big tree.  From there I went slowly and carefully maneuvering around all the vines and broken limbs.  Eventually I did make it to the very top. 




The sun was getting close to setting



and the strong light was warm on the nearby tree line. 




I saw Jim and his wife walking by on the driveway



and then saw Norman drive past them on his motorcycle.  I screamed his name but he couldn’t hear.  I went on with my picture shooting



then put the camera away and made my way back down the big tree.  I transferred back to the small tree and then climbed down the thick vine to the ground. 

I turned to find the sun was just setting and casting brilliant oranges on the clouds.  I saw Jim and his wife again and told them I should’ve stayed up in the tree a little longer and pointed to the sun.  It was still a good climb to the top on a challenging, vine-covered tree.