Letting the sun shine in…at what expense?

Last week I blogged about cleaning our windows and letting the sun shine in.
Well little did I know the sun was going to shine in my office more this week.
And I am not quite sure it’s the way I wanted it to.
Is this an example of be careful what you wish for?

My office is in a western suburb of Chicago, I have a south and west corner office that overlooks a grass area consisting of five oak trees, two pine trees and one young elm. This past week, I watched in sadness as they removed the five oak trees.

One at a time the men worked to secure the tree, so that it would fall exactly where they planned.
Then they cut into the base of the tree, removing a triangle section of the trees lifeline to the earth.
As the tractor took up the slack of the rope and began to move, you could see all the branches and leaves begin to shake.
Was the tree putting up a fight?
Was the life of a living part of the earth being silenced?

The sound of the chain saw began as it cut into branches and the stump as the tree lay helpless. The pieces of this tree, that shaded so many for years, were picked up and placed on a truck to be removed from the property. Then in moved the auger that would shred the roots to sawdust leaving only traces of a majestic tree.

Then on to the next four trees for the same pattern of securing, cutting, falling, dismembering and removal.
By the end of the afternoon all five trees were meer memories.

I know the workers were just doing their jobs. They seemed to work at a respectful pace, honoring the service the trees gave to the earth.
But with each tree that fell, more sunlight filled my western exposure office.

One of my secretaries commented on what a shame it was and that my office will probably be much warmer in the winter now.
But as the light poured in, I paused to reflect on how I just blogged about cleaning your windows and now I stand here with clean windows and no beautiful trees to look at.

The trees had to come down, they were too close to the building and were causing roof damage and an enormous amount of maintenance cost. My head says, I understand…but my heart says, what a loss.

I am trying to find comfort in the warmth of the sun on my face as I work and look forward to the new landscape they will be adding in the now expansive green space.
Yet I can’t help but think of the great expense of the loss of five beautiful trees to let the sun shine in.

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