Since them the Teleospouse has worried even more about the big pine and this past weekend we finally got around to having it taken out. Before we selected a tree service to do the work we obtained four different estimates. Each of the first three tree services looked at the trees we wanted removed and at our yard, and each of them gave us a hint along with their estimate. "Here's our estimate," they all said, more or less, "we'll be glad to do it ... but you might want to talk to J&D -- their crane would be mighty handy for a job like this."
Demonstrating that even I can take a hint the last firm we talked to was J&D and their price was as good as any and they estimated they could get the job done in four hours where all the others were figuring on two days minimum. Here are some photos of the process. They aren't photographic marvels but they do show off my new image stabilized Kodak p850 camera and Sony DH1758 teleconverter to some advantage. We had four trees removed but I only stayed around to photograph the removal of the first one -- the big pine.
Note: This sequence of photos makes it look like they took out the tree in two sections. Actually it was three. I didn't have a clear shot of the cutter cutting off the first section (too many branches in the way) so I omitted the cutting and removal of the middle section.