We did not escape Frankenstorm unmolested. The morning after, a fifteen foot Leland Cypress was listing starboard at a 45 degree angle against our fence. It hadn't toppled over…yet.
After Mama Wordbones and I conducted an amateur arborist triage we determined we needed a rope and a sturdy stake to stabilize the patient. We had rope but nothing in our stake inventory was suitable for a tree this size. We went to Home Depot…and then Lowes…neither of which carried the serious business stake we were looking for. Mama Wordbones suggested Southern States would have what we needed. They did. Mama Wordbones is a former country girl and country people know all about Southern States.
The stake and rope were sufficient to shore up the tree but to straighten her out we needed more muscle. At this point, my early life as a groundskeeper at Merriweather Post Pavilion came back into focus. It was in that point in my life that I learned about a tool called a come-along. “We need a come-along,” I declared.
At first I thought we could rent one. I mean this isn't a tool you use everyday. It could be years before we’ll have a need for it again.
Well, I found out yesterday that you can’t rent one, not at ABC Rental in
Columbia anyway. I headed over to Home Depot.
“I’m looking for a come-along,” I said to the guy in the tool department. He looked at me like I had two heads. I gave him a decidedly non technical description of the device and he told me to wait while he found an older guy to deal with me. As I awaited his return I played around with this Rigid heavy duty boom box. A guy wearing a black Rigid jacket comes up and asks if I have any questions about the boom box. “No really, what I really want is a come-along.”
He took me right to them. A one ton come-along cost $31.76. That seemed very reasonable to me.
It worked like a charm too. Once we got it properly rigged to the tree it was easy street to an upright tree. I just cranked that big boy right back into place.
It turns that the proper name for this tool is also called a cable puller. To me it will forever be a come-along, one of the best tools around.