Friday, October 24, 2014

Phantom Tree-Cutting

I have been hearing some really strange noises outside on the estate over the past week or two. The noises were loud mechanical and sort of high-pitched. I couldn't work out what it was and where it was coming from as it was quite difficult to ascertain from which direction it was coming from. A bit like when you're driving along on a road somewhere and you hear a siren, probably a police car, ambulance or fire engine but it's hard to know where it is, whether it's behind you, coming towards you or from left or right. You don't know whether to pull over to the side or the road or just slow down, but then you see whatever it is in your rear-view mirror. All was revealed the other morning when I was quietly sitting in the lounge and I could hear this sound outside. Then something began moving along the Redway, which runs along the back of our garden.  The phantom machine! I could see a yellow machine, or SOMETHING, slowly moving past, something which must have been on the back of a tractor or similar machine, with what must have been a sort of hydraulic arm with some sort of cutting attachment on it like a mower which moved up and down and was cutting some of the branches of the tree which grow along the edge of the Redway. I became somewhat concerned that it would break through into our garden. A section of our fence has been blown over and is virtually vertical and awaits repair by our landlord (it's at least four months since they came out to look and told us that it would all be replaced, but as we've heard nothing further we're beginning to wonder whether all that was just to get us to sign a new tenancy agreement.) and I from where I was sitting indoors, really imagined that this beast of a machine was going to break through into the garden. It was moving along and making a lot of noise, not just the machine, engine, noise, but the breaking of branches as it cut them as it moved along. When I went out onto the Redway later when I walked over to Milton Keynes Academy to meet Carol from work I could see where this machine had been. It looked as it it hasn't actually cut the branches but merely broken them off and left a really ragged edge. Also, all along the verge they had cut the bracken and brambles and it looked quite clean and tidy, but there was still a lot of litter and rubbish left which should have been removed. When we went for a walk with the dogs along the Redway a few weeks ago we noticed a similar thing with trees and bushes. It looked as if some sort of large creature had been past and broken off the branches. I think it was the untidy finish which was such a shock, not a clean cut to them. Perhaps it's to encourage new growth or something, but it was the fact that it looked so untidy which was what surprised us.

Its been a very over-cast sort of day today. Generally, the weather has got worse over the past week or so. We've been spoilt with the so-called 'Indian Summer' and then the tail-end of the hurricane which was spinning towards the British Isles across the Atlantic Ocean and the wet and windy weather which we had here (but actually, not too bad in Milton Keynes, fortunately.) It's undecided as regards rain and it's been mostly dry with occasional rain today. Carol is on Half Term next week. She has a day today doing teacher training, which she tells me is generally very boring, just listening to people rabbiting on. I can identify with this, as I've had to endure some really dull training days with the jobs I've had, particularly in care, where you have to do the compulsory stuff like manual handling and food preparation, which can become so DULL you want to scream, but it would be no good if you did and just have to put up with it, unfortunately.
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