The renovation cycle has turned, and amongst other jobs which are being and to be done, tree cutting was added. (A sub-clause of the jammy piece principle - if dropped, a jammy piece will fall jammy side down - is that if great sums of money are being paid out, another large expense will force its way up the queue.) The poplar had grown so high that were it so to fall, it would smash my sewing room. A drastic crown reduction was called for.
The rule, just as in cutting fabric, is look and discuss at length before beginning the climb - especially as the tree grows between an electricity wire and a public path to a primary school.
A twice-extended ladder forms the foothills of the ascent, which reaches the topmost branches in order to secure the rope.
Then, with the rope in place, the descent to the cutting can begin.
And with the cut line established after a few hours, the cutting for the day more or less ends (a less experienced guy is given the opportunity in the afternoon to climb up and experience cutting at the great height !). Clearing - the much longer job - begins.
On the two subsequent days the experienced climber and cutter gradually works his way across the tree. Although there is much crashing of falling timber, the job on the whole is remarkably elegantly and skillfully done.
Another less experienced guy gets the opportunity ! to climb up to cut the final bit of branch and retrieve the rope.
All was busyness and noise for four days, and then on the fifth the fence was mended (a couple of pieces of tree didn't miss it), and now all is quiet. And we are discovering how agile the squirrels are. Discombobulated at first because their electricity super highway was previously brushed by branches. Now they really have to l e a p! And they do.
And we have a greatly augmented wood pile - not to mention having an entertaining spectacle to compensate for the lack of work that I achieved.