Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What Price Paradise

Most Coconut Palm trees are still trimmed by people wearing telephone pole climbing spikes on their boots. All those holes punched in their trunks leave coconut palm trees vulnerable to disease, so more and more people are opting to pay up for less destructive climbing methods.

A couple of years ago it was impossible to find anyone who did spikeless, but we managed to find a guy named Alia who lived in the jungle in Haiku. He didn't simply live in the jungle, no, he lived as one with the jungle - no house for him.

He wasn't in the tree trimming business for the money, it was the coconuts which interested him - because that was the only thing he ate. Coconut water, coconut meat and coconut milk - these, he believed, were all that were needed to sustain life. He climbed the trees without equipment, just his bare hands and feet, slowly. That was his secret he told me, to go slowly. The problem for us was, it took him months to trim all the trees because once he had enough coconuts to eat, he would disappear into the jungle until he ran out of food.

Now, of course, almost every tree trimming company offers spikeless and we can get our trees trimmed in one day. After all at $25 per coconut palm tree using telephone pole spikes or $40 per tree spikeless the profit margin is too good to pass up.

Personally I don't understand why they charge more. Spikeless climbing gives the workers a much better workout - you'd think they would be paying us for giving them incredible abs.

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