Can you spot the difference in these two pictures, taken a few days apart?

before after trees

Yes, when I took the one on the right it was a sunnier day.  The spruce trees  have gone too.  We’re pleased; they sucked light like a black hole, those trees did.  It wasn’t only those six that were chopped down; the road that runs along the side of our garden is the boundary to a small forest several hundred metres deep, planted fifty years ago.  In the past few weeks the farmer has taken the lot; these spruce were ready, their time was up.  All that remains are some scattered birch and a few hazel bushes.

2forest

We had heard about a year ago that it was going to happen.  Then, suddenly, this snorting beast was on our doorstep.

bigchopperWhat a machine!

wholechopper

Look at this:

chopper 2It clamps itself to the trunk with its steel pincers and saws it through, sometimes as close as six inches from the ground.

1saw

Then it upends the tree and the two black wheels rotate, which pulls the trunk through the yellow fist while stripping off all the branches.  It all takes two or three seconds.

1chopper

This one, below, it grasped high up in order to avoid a telephone cable (the one you received this picture though, as a matter of fact).  A lumberjack had to do the cutting with a chain saw.

goathouse

The driver and operator of the machine was very funny.  He said that people love to watch him, so he always has to be aware of where they’re standing.  The ones he has to worry about are the old men; they act like they aren’t interested at all.  He’ll be about to fell an enormous hundred-year-old spruce and he’ll suddenly spot two old men hiding behind it, who then pretend they’re just walking away.

(What do the goats think?  To be continued…)

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