Thursday, October 6, 2016


Remember that old Mister Rogers song?  I'm sure you remember the lyrics
Tree, tree, tree
Tree, tree, tree,
Tree, tree, tree,
Tree, tree, tree
Such a silly song, yet so simple and, like most of the simple things Mister Rogers talked about, somehow profound...and all these years later, I remember it.

I hope there are trees in heaven.  Trees are the thing that seem to interest my mother the most these days.  Whenever we go out, it's not the flowers or the houses or the gardens that interest her it's the trees.  Fortunately there are lots of beautiful trees in Davis.

My favorite is a weeping willow tree on the corner of a minor intersection.  We've seen that tree go from beautiful and lush, to barely alive, spindly and sad, to now starting to be thriving again. I wanted to plant a weeping willow tree after David died, and again after Paul died.  It was symbolic of how I was feeling, but it never got planted.

My office, when David died, had a tree planted in David's memory.  It's planted at the Veteran Memorial Theater, where our kids performed so often (and where David's memorial service was held)  They asked me what kind of tree I wanted to plant and I eagerly chose the Chinese Pistache tree.  They are all over town and in the fall display the most glorious of color everywhere.

(This isn't David's's a generic Chinese Pistache.)

Well they display glorious color everywhere except in our own back yard.  We had one planted when we were what I laughingly call "landscaping" our yard and year after year I hope for some show of color, but each year it just goes from green to brown with no hint of color in between.  Fortunately, soon David's tree will turn red again.

There is an evergreen tree also planted at the Veteran's Memorial Theater in Paul's memory.  While David's tree is looking really full and beautiful, 20 years after it was planted, Paul's is living, but not exactly something you are going to point to and say "Isn't that gorgeous?"

I have always loved redwood trees.  Those majestic trees that climb up, up, and up almost beyond belief.  One wonders if you climb one to the top, will you meet Jack's Giant?  There is a redwood grove here in Davis, along the banks of Putah Creek on the university campus.  These are just baby redwoods, not the hundreds of years old regal trees in redwood groves near the coast, but beautiful in their own right--and eventually will also become majestic. This is another place I wanted to share with my mother which she can't walk far enough to get to.

It's part of the university's arboretum, which is so glorious in the spring, especially those trees that burst into blossom at that time.

Of course, our own street has some beautiful trees.  The neighbors met with representatives of the city many years ago after several years of really bad auto accidents from the high school students using our street as a raceway, and going out of control at the slight curve.  The solution suggested was to built an island with trees in it in the middle of the street.  And it has worked.  Not a single accident since then.  Plus, it looks pretty too.

When you have a mother whose main interest is in trees, it's nice to be living in a town with so many of them to appreciate!

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