One of the things that came with this house, we learned later, was a very large, very dead tree in the back yard. The neighbors have so many overgrown trees that they kind of swallowed up the branches to ours and led us to believe that our tree was not dead. But, our tree was, in fact, quite dead. The tree was no more. It had passed on, it had ceased to be.
Anything except an eyesore that would cost $700+ to have removed. Tonight when we came home, the Christmas lights I had hung to the underside of the carport were not lit. Odd, I thought. But I didn't think too much because the timer on those lights is powered by an AAA and only works for a few months at a time before there's no power left.
But Lori got out and went over and picked up a black cord hanging loose and stared at it trying to figure out where it should have been plugged in. Nevermind that, I said, trying to draw her attention to the house-colored cord that was draped from the house, over a fence and extended past the garage into the back yard. Having just seen a semi-bad original movie where a guy with an electric(!) snowblower plugs into his neighbor's Christmas lights for power, I thought someone had plugged into our power.
And then I realized what it was... it was the phone line into the house from the pole, rounding the garage, we could see it running along the ground. So we hit the lights on the garage and saw that a humongous piece of the tree had broken free and pulled the phone cord down with it. Thankfully, the dog had been inside for the past few hours while we were out having dinner. We pulled the phone cord from under the tree and threw it up onto the roof -- so we could let the dog out without her eating the phone cord -- and that was that.
Big chunk of the tree down means it will cost less to have the rest of it removed and now I know that there isn't a specific way to how the phone cord is attached to the pole and I can finally get it moved over towards the garage and finally have a back yard with no wires above.