It's funny what can float your boat as you get older. Or maybe it has nothing to do with getting older. Maybe, instead, it has everything to do with living through long, cold winters in Maine. Maybe it has to do with the fact that *I* did most of the wood stacking last year. Maybe it has to do with running out of firewood early one winter, and fearing an ice storm or some other weather disaster that would prevent our oil heater (that requires electricity) from working.
Or maybe it does have everything to do with getting old.
Either way, yesterday we had three cords of firewood delivered to our home. Last year, after the whole fuel price crisis of the previous winter, and after some serious negligence on our part, we didn't get our firewood delivery until November. Which means we had to buy it already seasoned. Translation: more expensive.
This year, I phoned the firewood guy in March. Yes, you could say I learned that lesson, after we furiously stacked firewood during many cold days last fall, hoping we could get it all done before the first snow.
Yesterday, this year's wood arrived. The truck left the wood in a big pile in the usual place next to our garage. Normally, we look at the wood for a few days, daunted by the hugeness of the pile. Then we'll send the kids out for an hour or so each day to begin the long process of stacking the wood. My husband and I stack here and there, as time allows. As the summer wears on, tall grass begins to grow up through the unstacked pile. Chipmunks set up residence in the maze of cut logs, as do all varities of spiders and other creepy crawlies.
These facts only worsen our procrastination with the stacking.
So this year I did what I've been talking about doing for many years now. I hired four young men who are friends of my daughter. They are nice guys. They are totally trustworthy. They are hard workers. And they are STRONG.
The guys were out of school today so they showed up around 10:00 a.m. The sun was shining, the weather was perfect, the radio was loud, and they attacked that pile with a vengeance. Just after 4:00 p.m. they finished. FINISHED. But wait - there's more. A couple of them went out back and split a bunch of big logs from some trees we took down last year. I had already paid them and told them they didn't have to do any more, but they did.
I told them I think they need to come live with us. They thought I was joking.
I assure you, I was not.
Honestly, when I looked out at that neatly stacked wood this evening, I don't know if I'd ever seen anything so beautiful in my life.
This is what my life has become: I drool over stacks of firewood and I want to acquire more teenagers.
Quick, someone get me a glass of wine before all hope is lost.
Copyright © 2009 - Paulla Estes