It is time to get the firewood done. No it is past time. I should have done it in the Spring. I had good intentions all summer to get at it but as usual I procrastinated. For the first time, I did not cut the trees down and haul the wood out of the bush. My neighbour who used to help me with it, using his skidder had a family tragedy and has not been around much lately. His youngest son (age 25) committed suicide. Just a few years ago his other son died in a car accident. Since then his brother who was just a year older than him died unexpectedly who watching a NASCAR race in Bristol, Tennessee. Sometimes I wonder just how much tragedy and grief some people have to endure.. I had hoped to reconnect with him and cut some wood together but it has not worked out. http://philiprobinson.blogspot.com/search?q=Doing+Firewood
I purchased some logs from another neighbour who is a small jobber cutting logs and selling the wood off crown land, under contract. Below is the pile of wood he delivered. He tells me it will measure out to between 17 and 20 face cord when I cut spite and pile it. I shall see when I finish the work. I will pile it outside until November so it can cure some more and then I will move it into the basement (la cave, en français) I love the French word, it is so much more descriptive of what an unfinished basement is.
I enjoy to fire wood. It is a form of meditation for me. It is a solitary activity, with the buzz of the chain saw and the silence interrupted by the chopping of the blocks. In the piling of the wood there is a satisfaction in seeing the results of your efforts grow into elegant pile of well stacked wood four feet high and 16 inches wide. This is an art form, which I have never managed to accomplish. Before I am through I will have at least part of one of my pile fall over in need of a re-piling. I doubt it I will ever be skilled at this art form. I so admire the neat piles of some neighbours who have spend their life time doing fire wood. Still while my piles stand I admire them as if they were perfect..
I meditate while doing wood. There are time when one is in a trance state doing it. I enjoy the physicality of splitting wood with a maul. This I do do with some skill. To split blocks of wood one must study the wood and discover the lines it will best split along.. A knowledge of the type of wood is required. My load has birch, poplar and ash. This is the first time I have spit ash but I expect it will be relatively easy as ash has very straight grain.
This task will occupy me over next couple of weeks., or longer if I do not tire too quickly.