In 2002 we ran away from Illinois where we were born and raised, and started a new life in SW Florida. This blog is about me (an eccentric old artist), ROM (my Real Old Man), Isabella (our neurotic Standard Poodle) and Emmy (our crazy snake killing Jack Russell Terrier). Oh- and the neighborhood old people. Life is good in Florida!


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tree Molesters and Thieves...

I was awakened early Wednesday morning to the sound of a helicopter circling above and making quite a racket. But the sound of the helicopter was quickly drowned out by the roar of some kind of machinery. Sweet jezzuz, it sounded like I was in the middle of a frigging war zone! I stumbled out of bed and out the door to see what in the hell was going on- before I realized all I had on was thin tee shirt and panties with my bed hair looking like a damn bird's nest. It was the freaking cut rate palm tree trimmers the community hires to trim all the palm trees and they were scalping the poor palm tree in our side yard.  This has been a bone of contention for us ever since we moved here. Instead of hiring competent trimmers to trim the trees correctly (only cutting off dead fronds) they hire these cut rate hacks that scalp the trees until they look like Q-tips. Repeated severe trims of healthy fronds seriously stresses and harms the trees. If you look at the photo below you can see the narrowing of the trunk that is caused by repeatedly stressing the tree with severe trims. In Broward County it's even illegal to do severe trims on palm trees. When I went to bed Tuesday night my palms looked like this- all green healthy fronds.

And when I stumbled outside Thursday morning, this is what they had done. 

I tried screaming over the sound of the saws to get them to stop, but they weren't going to listen to me. Then it occurred to me I wasn't dressed for a confrontation- the work crew sure wasn't going to listen to some old woman in a tee shirt and panties. It's hard enough for a woman to get a man to listen to her when properly dressed, let alone when dressed in practically nothing.  So I went back inside, threw on some clothes and headed back outside to try to save ROM's decorations and lights plus the remaining trees. It was too late- they had actually pulled the truck up into the yard, tossed ROM's deer and ground lights to the side and were mutilating our gorgeous lush palm trees with the fallen fronds tossed on the tree of lights ROM had spent hours erecting.

See the guy falling on his ass in the street? He seemed to be the guy in charge and the one I argued with trying to get them to stop. He was rude, abrasive and made it clear he wasn't going to listen to a word I said.  I bet he's mean to his mother, too.

And no- I didn't shove him on his ass, though I sure as hell wanted to! I have no idea why he was staggering around and falling down. But I hope he bruised his ass and got road rash on his balls.

When ROM got home, he set his deer and things back up and though thoroughly pissed he was relieved that all the lights still worked. We had a serious discussion about putting this place on the market come spring. We just aren't suited for a restricted senior community. 

So did I sleep in and undisturbed this morning? Oh hell no! Shortly before 7 a.m. someone was pounding on my frigging door. I tried to ignore it, thinking it was probably a neighbor wanting something and they could come back later. The knocking stopped and I settled back into bed hoping for another couple of hours of sleep. And then the door pounding started again- this time Isabella reacted and charged the front door barking her fool head off. I got up, walked to the front of the house and looked out the window- it was the police! WTH? Were the tree trimmers having me arrested? ROFL! 

This time I remembered to put a robe on before I stepped out to see what the cops wanted. And no, I wasn't being arrested. The officer told me some thieves went through the community ransacking cars and even stole a car. She said my car doors were standing open and it was obvious my car had been searched by the thieves.  I told her we leave the car unlocked because it has a soft top and we don't want the top cut by someone trying to get in it. And we never leave anything of value in our cars. I called ROM at work to tell him what was going on and he said it must have happened after he left for work at 4:30. 

Oh- and that helicopter that was circling above my house Wed. morning? I never did find out what that was about, but I've had about all the excitement I can stand this week. Gawd help the person that wakes me up tomorrow...


  1. What was done to your trees is plain butchery, ROH! Are these people supposedly professionals? No palm trees here but I would have a fit too if anyone trimmed a tree like that! If the HOA is supposed to be protecting the community, seems to me they need to look at who they're hiring!

  2. I can't even stand to look at them now. I just wish they'd let us take care of our trees ourselves.


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