The Olive Tree Planting!

Whose idea was it to relocate a mature olive tree? That’s what I want to know, having just endured the most stressful day imaginable…..

It was a morning of callers anyway. Marion came first with a long financial account of the last few months expenditure. It was all on paper as her computer is still out of action. That’s Apple Macs for you…… Nothing wrong with the technology but try finding someone around here who can fix one…..

Then while she was still here, the freezer repair guy turned up and he said it was the electronics board that either needed replacing or fixing and he took it off to his friend. He may be back tomorrow but it could be the day after. We cant keep the meat going any longer. Most seems ok and I will cook it up and we’ll eat it. The sheftali looked a bit dodgy so they’ve gone to the bin which is very sad. I roasted the chicken portions and sausage and we’ll eat that up quickly hot and cold.

While all this was going on the tree saga began….. it was meant to be being dug up at 9am but of course, being Cyprus, this slipped and it was maybe 1045 till we got a call to say it was about to set off to us. Bob went to the bottom of the hill to guide the transport up. He was then out of contact. 10 minutes later the phone rang. False alarm. They were having enormous trouble getting it out of the ground….. it would be later. Marion departed and put Bob on the phone and I told him and he came back. It was now 1145. The phone rang again and it was to say that the man had got the tree on his lorry but he was now driving to us in his JCB, he would dig the hole and then Bob would drive him back to the tree (about 20 mins) and he would bring it on the lorry.

Well… we were expecting a smallish JCB but it was a truly, truly enormous one….. like a tonka toy mega transformer! How he manoevered it down the drive and into the orchard was terrifying to watch. Then he started to dig. After a while he signalled to me and we held a 3 way conversation by phone with me (no Turkish), him (no English) and another man who spoke both. Apparently our soil was too clayish and it would be rubbish for the tree. He recommended he replace the topsoil all around the tree with better soil. OK. He continued to dig a massive, massive hole…… then again in a 3 way conversation attempted to interest me in re-landscaping the orchard area and replacing all our “bad soil” with good soil. “Just tell him you;ll think about it but not today” the man on the phone advised……. Advice taken. Hole dug, Bob drove him back to the tree, then returned and about 30 minutes later the man appeared on a small flatbed lorry with our tree on board. It really is a beautiful thing.

He reversed the lorry down the drive to the digger and hoisted the tree in the air using a cradle. Then went off in the lorry to get the topsoil. At this point the garden area looked so dreadful, irrigation pipes under mountains of “bad soil”, I said the immortal words to Bob, “I wish we’d never done this”….

Two trips back and forth getting topsoil loads which were dumped, then spread beneath and around the tree. The last lot went in around 4pm and it’s dark here by 440. “I come back with another load in the morning”, he said. In the meantime I ran the hose into the tree planting “until the hole fills with water”. It never did after about an hour. Not sure if this means our “clay” is not perhaps as dire as predicted or what….. Bob went back with him while he drove his truck home and then brought him back so he could drive his JCB back to Lapta. That must have been fun in the rush hour traffic. We watched him go and then made a dash for the fridge (working) and made a strong g&t. I’d wanted one at about 2pm but obviously…..

In the midst of this, actually in an ocean of peace while digger man and Bob were on the way to Lapta, the freezer guy came back and fitted a new electronics board. And just like that…. it all sprang back to life. it will take a few hours to become cold but the signs are good. He loved our house and the view and we went out to the pool overlook and admired the mountains, which he loved. He even loved the tree!!!!!

I have messaged Habibi and he is coming on Sunday morning with 3 mates to do “everything”. Thank god for something positive. I must be tired. I don’t generally get stressed like this. On the plus side, it’s a beautiful tree.