The Peter and Gertrud Klopp Family Project

Reflections on Life, Family and Community

Daily Archives: October 20, 2015

Irony of Life


A Wish Squashed Unexpectedly Granted

In 1976 our family moved to Fauquier, BC, at the beautiful Arrow Lake. Between our neighbor’s and our house grew a dozen or so young cedar trees. Nor more than five meters tall at the time they were just the right height to let the sun shine on our deck and provide the privacy Gertrud needed for taking a little break from the mounting duties in our seven-members’ household.

Our House after a Mobile was Added in 1977

‘Old’ House with Attached Mobile Home to Accommodate  our Large Family in 1976

Inge, our neighbor,  often came over for a visit and a cup of coffee. At one of those occasions she made the generous offer to have the cedar trees cut down to add more light to the south side of our house. However, we opted to maintain the fine balance between light and privacy and adamantly opposed the idea.

Ten years later we began to regret our decision as the cedars had almost doubled in height. Inge had moved to Vancouver and eventually sold the house to Dave, who although being a bachelor impressed us with his impeccably clean house and yard. He also loved the trees on his property, which, having turned into green giants, were preventing with their dense foliage the sun rays from reaching our home. We virtually lived in a shadowy world. I approached Dave a couple of times in an attempt to convince him to take out just a few of his beloved cedars. But he always gave me the negative reply. So at the end Gertrud and I gave up and resigned ourselves to the steadily growing darkness in and around our house.

Suddenly, Dave passed away one night of some undetermined illness and his brother  sold his house to some friends in Calgary. Again we are very lucky in getting some very fine neighbors, who take good care of their yard. Even though Tony and Anne are using their property mostly as a summer residence, they often travel the 600 km or more to keep their land attractive and in top shape. For them work appears to be recreation. First they built a storage shed, then they solved their drainage problem by building a massive retaining wall and then  after their trailer showed some water damage, they decided to build a garage.

By now, you must be wondering what I am driving at with my strange post. Perhaps you think that Peter got ‘off the rail’ with his theme “Irony of Life”, but read on and look at the photo gallery below. You guessed it. To build a garage between their house and ours more than half of the cedar trees had to be removed.

After only three days, for the first time in 30 years, precious sunlight was flooding bedroom, bathroom, and the mobile home living room and office. This is the irony of life. After you have given up on whatever your desire used to be, no matter how intense and urgent, you see its fulfillment, when you least expect it.

Now we feel a new conflict in our hearts. Yes, we need and love sunshine. But we also love trees and know their value for our environment.For that reason we also feel a little bit saddened by the loss of those mighty trees.


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