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One Small Step

At the top of this magnificent, old Oak tree, branches lush with green ferns greeted my eyes. I looked down at the sub-tropical plants of Sarasota, Florida, admiring the beauty of my view. Epiphytes sprouting between limbs, broad leafed philodendrons below, and the leafy tops of palm trees made my heart sing with the heady joy of being up so high. That was until Jim, one of the climbers who works with Archangel Ancient Tree Archive taking cuttings from old, champion trees for them to clone and plant in living tree libraries, told me the bad news. From his comfortable perch on a nearby branch, Jim said, “You have to step off into mid-air to get down.” I looked at the ground. My knees started

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