May 2009

June 2, 2009 – In the month of May I found myself experimenting with tree-climb repetition.  I chose to climb the Holly tree and Maple tree in my yard over and over. Many people ask when first hearing that I climb everyday if I climb the same one. I decided I’d finally try that out.

Here again are my short thoughts about each of the climbs from the previous month.

MAY 2009

DAY 758 05.01.09 – Ginkgo across street from school on Payne, wet, cool, dark, on my way to Cumberland Brew

DAY 759 05.02.09 – Sycamore at entrance to Cherokee off Lexington Rd near Grinstead waiting for LPK people to show

DAY 760 05.03.09 – Very tiny tree off Cabel by shipping place, was wet and quick

DAY 761 05.04.09 – Maple in Cherokee with many caterpillars, took my time as I observed the hanging and crawling things

DAY 762 05.05.09 – Bishop’s Pine take two, this time with gloves and my camera… not as sticky, Natalie shooting below

DAY 763 05.06.09 – Small Sycamore by kiddie playground by Tumbleweed at Parkour… very wet, split my pants bad

DAY 764 05.07.09 – Tall beech just off loop in woods in park behind Fun Is Bowling in St. Matthew’s

DAY 765 05.08.09 – Catalpa tree just over barbed fence on Beargrass Creek Trail by I-71…talked to Rickey then went up and over the rail ending up on Payne Street

DAY 766 05.09.09 – Holly in front of my house, late, full moon, after wondering anxiously about climbing around Baxter

DAY 767 05.10.09 – Mother’s Day, came home from parents’ and decided to climb Holly tree out front again. I had such a nice, peaceful moment at the top, I thought it’d be nice to go there again

DAY 768 05.11.09 – I plan to climb the Holly everyday for a week. Today I climbed in daylight and took a bag with food and wrote in my sketchbook

DAY 769 05.12.09 – broke the streak and climbed a tree on the Belvedere with Mark, Nicole, and Britney while we were doing parkour

DAY 770 05.13.09 – Holly out front again. Wind was blowing and it was the first time I got the sense the trees were talking to each other.

DAY 771 05.14.09 – There was undulating buzz high in the Holly, Honey Bees and House flies hurried between buds, so busy pollinating I was untouched. 

DAY 772 05.15.09 – Left the potluck at Tim & Nat’s to go home and climb the Holly. Effort exacerbated my headache and my stomach also hurt, though top was peaceful.

DAY 773 05.16.09 – Waited till just after sunset to climb the Holly. Took my camera for first time in a while and knew more about how to shoot from all the digital camera research I’ve done lately… got some nice shots and knew what the hell I was doing.

DAY 774 05.17.09 – Broke the Holly streak again and climbed a Sugar Maple with Josh.  It’s a great tree hidden in the underbrush behind the fence by the interstate off Adams near some hobo-habitat.

DAY 775 05.18.09 – With Tim, Natalie, and Drew at the park off lower Brownsboro. I climbed the leaning tree I climbed some time before. I went out all the way to the end and while sitting, four young people sat at the picnic table below. I said "excuse me," and they all looked around for a few seconds before looking up. I was just trying to let them know I was there so I wouldn’t scare them.

DAY 776 05.19.09 – Felt like picking a different tree to climb over and over. It’s the maple out back of the house which I have already climbed 5 or 6 times. Only this time I climbed up the other side… it was difficult and became a completely different experience. 

DAY 777 05.20.09 – Did one last shoot at Bishop’s Pine since the sky was clear and blue. Again the sap was thick but the gnats were worse. We got some great shots though.

DAY 778 05.21.09 – Climbed another of the Bradford Pears outside the BBC Taproom, second from corner. Natalie walked over to make sure I was sober enough to be up there. I was.

DAY 779 05.22.09 – Climbed the maple again out back just after Drew left for his first date with Shelly

DAY 780 05.23.09 – Tim & Norm’s going away party at the McChesney Compound. Climbed a tree with much damage, in hedge between fields.

DAY 781 05.24.09 – The neighbor was out with the puppy and he didn’t see me so I sneaked up the opposite side of the maple tree. I crept forward out in the branches and watched sure I went unseen. It was nice out on the edges and I’d like to explore them more.

DAY 782 05.25.09 – Late night, rain falling, I went back out to the maple and stayed warm and dry underneath its thick canopy.I further explored the outskirts of the limbs and tested the strength and intricacies of my new-found paths.

DAY 783 05.26.09 – As I climbed that maple out back for the ump-teenth time, I thought to myself, time to move on. I like that tree, and there are some great spots to relax and think (which is what I did), but there are so many more trees to discover and explore.

DAY 784 05.27.09 – Climbed a small tree down on the Waterfront near the Plaza. It was small and as I was nearing the top a bird scared me. It was leaving its nest exposing two young chicks. I looked then climbed quickly down to let them alone.

DAY 785 05.28.09 – Played some ping pong with Natalie at the studio, then stopped and climbed a tree off the River Walk Trail around 7th St. I climbed up and at the top felt the branch drop. I frantically grabbed hold tight then saw a flash. A squirrel had jumped and ran past me. I stayed still and watched him run to another tree then I climbed back down. On the ground I found the hiding squirrel apologized for disturbing him. Later that night I crashed my bike going back to the studio and got some serious road rash on my right shoulder, elbow, and knee.

DAY 786 05.29.09 – Drew and I had the potluck at our house and made burritos. Halfway through I went out front and climbed the Ginkgo, but not as high as I have been before, just up the left far branch. I went slowly and carefully so as to not bust up my forming scabs.

DAY 787 05.30.09 – Went to my parents’ for dinner then played some pool with my dad afterward. Just as I was thinking about climbing the lightning flashed and rain began to fall. I ran out front and climbed up the small tree I had climbed last year when I had a serious case of poison ivy and a sunburn. I figured, with my current road rash, it’d be a good revisit, but the dropping rain picked up and I scrambled back down and ran inside without much reflection.

DAY 788 05.31.09 – I climbed last minute again in a pear tree just in front of the neighbor’s house. It was badly damaged in the ice storm and most of the top part of the tree broke off. I sat there looking at the jagged remains of what was the top trunk and wondered if this project was broken. I think I have just missed finding new trees that challenge me. I need to make sure I take advantage of these beautiful days and get out there and challenge myself. Bring on June 2009.