22 September 2005

It’s the wind, I tells ya, it’s the wind!

Barely had I returned home or we have a massive thunderstorm come through our neck of the woods.  We have a beloved old Maple tree in the back yard.  It’s really old and really big!  Unfortunately, it has a tendency of self destructing and dropping limbs whenever heavy winds are abound.
Needless to say, the storm was intense enough to take one of the main limbs down.  The limb came crashing down, taking out our copper wind chimes (a wedding gift), the shrub bush next to the house, the gutters on the one side of the house and end up partly on the roof.
I was on my way home from my client in Lafayette, IN trying to battle through the storm when Amy, my wife, called and said that the tree just fell on the house.  How to get home faster in a major storm without killing yourself?  What a dilema!  I could do nothing more than just patiently wait for the road to pass on my way home.
Upon my arrival at home, I found Amy in the back, hopelessly trying to pull the massive limb off the roof.  With as hard as it was raining, the the fact that the limb had crushed the gutter, the water was just pouring off the roof… right next to one of our basement windows!  That was not good and needed to be corrected or we were going to have flooding in the basement as well!
I went and got my chainsaw, a Craftsman 20".  I must say I’m not too impressed with it as it did not seem to want to run very well in the rain.  I know it probably wasn’t designed to be used in the rain, but nonetheless, having to restart the darn thing every so often was a real pain.  I knew we needed to cut the limb into smaller, more managable pieces if we were to get it off the roof at all.  I started cutting away…
My neighbours, Mike and Joan and their son Ben, herd the chainsaw and upon seeing the problem Mike brought his chainsaw as well.  His was electric.  Just as well as my gas powered piece of crap kept quitting on me.  Anyway, between the five of us, we got the branches of the limb cut off and removed.
We were now at a point where we could try and remove the limb from the roof.  We tied a rope to the end resting on the roof and gave it a big rug.  She came right off!  We then cut the limb up into smaller, more managable, firewood size pieces.  I tried bending the gutters back into place to be able to carry some water away when the next storm came through.
Of course then the next storm came through about 10 minutes after we had completed the cutting.  This one was dumping massive amounts of rain, so much so that the damaged gutters was once again overflowing.  Amy managed to keep the water from the basement window with buckets while I got a copper pipe and a 2×4 left over from our barn building experience this summer.  I used the pipe and 2×4 to wedge the gutters back into position allowing the rain water to drain normally again.  A temporary fix until we get the gutters fixed, but effective nontheless.
Of course we still have branches all over the yard, but at least we don’t have water entering the house… WHAT A WAY TO SPEND YOUR MONDAY NIGHT!… and then the Cowboys lost too!!!  Damn!
The bright side is that it could have been worse.
Check out the photos and video for more…
The video can be found here:

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