In the far corner of the back yard in Arleta,

there stood a huge avocado tree

that had long since given up

producing any avocados.

Then one year,  the guys (Bob & Kelly) discovered

that a huge branch of the tree was rotting away

and in danger of coming down on the metal shed

we had put up after the guys  had torn down

a rotten old wooden shed that us to be on that spot.

They moved the metal shed to one side

and Kelly climbed up into the tree

and sitting on the trunk of the tree,

just slightly out on the big branch,

he began to saw on the dead branch;

it was so heavy that

when it fell

it shook the house

and Kelly reported

it shook him up too–

he knew, logically, that HE wasnt

going to fall but the impact

of the branch was enough to

shake the ground.

It took Bob a long time to cut up

all of that wood

but the most remarkable thing about this story is

that early the following spring,

avocados began to appear on the tree–

not just a few avocados–but hundreds

and I counted two hundred and fifty avocados

from which I made the biggest batch of guacamole

you have ever seen;  I packed it into zip lock bags

and laid the bags flat in the freezer.

We had guacamole for about a year

or maybe two.

That tree was home to many of our feathered friends

and I had photographed an owl and a red-tailed hawk

along with the other birds

that rested there from  time to time.

It was a beautiful tree;

I was happy to make its acquaintance.


Sandra Lee Smith

July 11, 2010

Updated September 6, 2018

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