Today was characterized by alternating blue skies and grey rain bands. Tropical Storm Arlene got us going on some pre-hurricane tree trimming that needs to be done before the worst part of hurricane season (August-September) gets here. We had put it off for a while, but it's time. So I spent the dry part of the day dangling from my new 32 foot extension ladder as I sawed oak limbs that were weak or too close to the house.
It's pretty cool to be way up in a tall tree on a breezy day like today. You can feel the strength of the tree as it sways and flexes when the wind passes through it. During last year's hurricanes, these same trees were whipped in every direction as they absorbed the winds energy. Our house sits in a circle of forest that acts as a wind break during the big storms. The trick is to not have too many trees close enough to fall ON the house should the wind prove too much for them. I lost a few trees last year during Hurricane Frances and Jeanne, but the greatest effect on the trees was the wind-pruning of mostly weak new growth. After the storm the ground was covered with green-leaved branch tips.
Tonight the sky is clear and full of stars, so I guess it's true Arlene has moved on.