To my many designations I now add one that is decidedly notable – the crazy tree lady. I must say, I never saw it coming. I was just walking along minding my own business when I noticed a lone little tree that seemed to have been left from a holiday celebration. It was sitting on a cart by a window in the building I work in at NDSU. As the semester moved forward I would take note of the tree each time I passed through the area where it sits. Soon I started to notice it was drooping and looking a little worse for the wear.
That drooping prompted me to go over to the tree to inspect it further. I was disappointed to discover that it was as dry as a bone and appeared to desperately need water. I went to the nearest office and inquired about the tree. I told them the little tree was dying. I asked the ladies I spoke with if they could ensure that the tree got watered. They said they would call someone.
That was a couple of weeks ago. Tuesday the tree looked all but dead. When I touched its branches gently some crumbled at the touch. Only a few branches were still hanging on. I am not going to sugar coat my feelings at this sight – this pissed me off. I like living things and there is no excuse to just let something die. I kicked myself for not following up with those ladies in the office.
I took it upon myself right then and there to water the tree. I went to the nearby water fountain and filled up my travel coffee mug twice with water and dumped the water into the poor little tree’s pot which clearly had not seen water for weeks. I know the ladies in the office were watching me. I am sure I was scowling.
This morning, I brought a bottle of water with me to work and marched straight to the tree and watered it again. The folks sitting on the bench near the tree looked at me like I was a nut job. I did not care. I was fueled my righteous indignation.
When I got into my office I called the head of the department whose staff resides in the area where the little tree is and offered to take the little tree to my office to try and bring it back to life since no one seemed to be providing it any care. Truthfully, I considered just taking it up to my office without saying anything because I thought no one would notice or care, but that would be stealing and even if I am a crazy tree lady, I am still a good citizen. The head of the department said he’d check into what was going on with the tree and get back to me. He did not seem happy about my tree intervention. I did not care.
I am in an uproar about this little tree. I am not sure why the blatant disregard for its well-being has upset me so, but it has. My entire family and some of my colleagues have already heard me rant about it. I am fairly sure that folks think I have gone a bit over the edge on this – hence, the new designation.
I will be toting water for the little tree every day now until I can bring it back to some semblance of health. I am sure that by the time I am done I will have a t-shirt and tote bag that have “crazy tree lady” written on them. I don’t even care – this is my line in the sand – I am going to try and save that tree.
I have to tell you, I could swear as I walked out of the building today that the little tree looked like it had perked up the slightest bit. This made me happy. There are many big things that I may not be able to accomplish, but this one small thing – working to save the little tree – is something I can and will do.
Day one thousand three hundred and thirty-one of the new forty – obla di obla da