Monday, February 21, 2011

Wood work

I burned one tank of gas on the first day, after the boys helped me get the saw started. It sputtered and smoked and we decided, the three of us, that the cause was old gas. I haven't used the saw for a year since I knocked the chain off new years day 2010. I never even tried to put it back on even though it's a simple task. I just threw up my trembling arms. I can't remember the last time I filled the gas can. So on Saturday I ran through one tank of gas which took about twenty minutes and that made enough wood to fill 3 wheelbarrows of split pieces which I stacked perpendicular to the other piles in the carport siting increased pile stability. I stacked carefully and thoughtfully thinking about how it will feel next fall to use this perfectly seasoned dry firewood. On Sunday I went through two tanks of gas and my arms felt less shakey but I did notice that I really screw my face up while I use the saw, concentrating takes brow furrowing and a little shoulder tension. I should wear chaps but I don't own any. I wear ear protection and glasses. I try to be careful, knowing the saw could rip through my jeans and into my flesh. I cut a lot of small limbs from the giant maples upper branches that are now accessible on the ground and started a new pile of boughs so I could move around more easily as I bucked up the logs. Stepping carefully, avoiding tripping on branches. The tops of the cedars are worst, they have tons of springy branches and they are tougher to spit, the maul bounces off them sometimes, wasting my efforts. My biceps and upper back are stiff but amazingly after splitting, loading and stacking about 5 wheelbarrow loads I feel a bit stronger today and so this is my plan. Today I will try to saw through 3 tanks of gas and load maybe 8 wheelbarrow loads. The work felt endless but I think as my strength increases it will feel less overwhelming. In between I made a few paintings.

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