According to most people, when life hands you lemons, you're supposed to make lemonade. One of my son's friends suggested that putting those lemons in your brother's pants would be another possible solution. If you're a fan of the video game Portal 2, you might demand that life take its lemons back. I didn't ask for these lemons. Can I see the manager?
This is essentially how I've been feeling about the volunteer tree in our back yard. Our neighbor from over the fence has disavowed his ownership of the slip of land from which the top of the acacia tree was launched. He has several additional excuses and even more reasons why the twenty or so feet of tree that is now upside down in a great splintered heap in our back yard is not his problem. Sure, we could call our home insurance carrier, but any further discussions with them at this point might cause them to believe that we were cursed or afflicted in some way as to make us uninsurable. Since the wood beast didn't cause any real property damage, my response has been to chop it up into ever smaller pieces and wait for a better idea.
That's where my wife comes in: As the community-minded individual in this relationship, she took to our neighborhood's electronic bulletin board, and started making inquiries about what might be done with the top half of an acacia tree. She got back a number of clever answers, most of which involved us selling or donating it as firewood. Then she came to the best idea of all. She discovered that the Oakland Zoo will drop by and pick up great leafy branches to feed their elephants. She made the call.
On New Year's Eve, John the Elephant Guy drove out in a great big dump truck and helped us load up most of the branches that were stacked five feet high in our back yard. When all was said and done, we had filled a well-packed dump truck full of acacia branches, and even added a treat of a plum stump for the four pachyderms. John told us that that truckload would be their dinner. One night. And dessert.
I've still got the thicker chunks of the tree to deal with, but that will wait for now. My wife and I are looking forward to the next big load of leafy goodness we can offer up to our new friends from the broad savannah.