I was in a truly foul mood yesterday after a meeting with UKnet Rail. As a publicly owned company they seem to have managed to combine the worst of the public sector with the most grasping elaments of the private sector. They are operating in a higher sphere of Kafkaesque horror than a mere local authority can attain. I came away from the meeting depressed and demoralised.
Next I had to look at some problematic tree pruning jobs in one of our parks. Access was difficult, the friends group was difficult, the works would be expensive. Everything seemed problematic today, nothing seemed simple.
Back in the office, a resident rang up and demanded to know why we hadn’t pruned a tree. It would have been bad for the tree, I said. She didn’t care. We were simply an unresponsive council who cared nothing for the residents.
It would all have been fine if I had slept better, but I had woken at 5am and been unable to get back to sleep. I had lain awake worry about things that did not need to be worried about, or about which there was no benefit in worrying. Then I had got annoyed at myself for doing this, and my annoyance had kept me awake.
I cycled home through the nearby park, my route lined with mature trees, a hundred to two hundred years old, their leaves fresh and green. In that moment I hated them. I hated trees in general. All they do is make my life difficult. I’m sick of them. Enormous, inconvenient blocks of wood with pretensions, that’s all trees are. Awkward bastards growing in the wrong place, doing the wrong things, failing at the wrong times. Conspiring against me. Spiteful. Totally inconsiderate of my feelings. Mindless, stupid lumps, not even as intelligent as a chicken. What’s even the point in them? I’d be happy if I never saw another tree again in my life.
And so to bed.