Thursday, April 9, 2015

Cabin Fever Contemplations

Make it stop.  Please.
The snow just slid off the roof of the house, its own mini avalanche, rattling these old windows and freaking out the cats and causing a vibration under my feet. 

It’s April 9.  This is uncalled for.  I’d call Mother Nature a b____, but she seems peeved about something already and I don’t want to antagonize her further.

A couple of days ago I was lamenting the bog that I call a driveway.  It happens every spring, and to most of the Adirondacks, and although at the time it seems unrelenting, it does go away.  As I look at everything covered in a couple inches of snow and sleet today, the mud would be a welcome sight.  That’s what I get for grousing.

Since leaving my day job at the end of the year, I’ve spend a lot of quality time with our woodstove.  I’ve concluded that when it’s a secondary source of heat, it’s fun to futz with wood and nice to smell the smoke.  But when you’re counting on it for your survival in sub-zero temperatures, it loses its luster.  By April, I can’t stand dealing with it anymore and curse profoundly at every piece of wood that doesn’t quite fit.  I’m resentful of the 24/7 commitment it demands and tired of smelling like a piece of charred wood. 

Because we got off to a late start on the firewood this fall (due to the house painting project), Larry cut nothing but ash.  I love it because it splits so nicely.  And you can burn it green, which was the plan.  It’s burned very well for us, considering it only had minutes to age.

Our new house in Mississippi has two fireplaces, and I’m trying not to be elitist towards them.  One has glass doors and was obviously used more regularly than the other one.  Neither are intended to be a real source of heat, but should be useful in getting the chill out on those damp days.  I haven’t used a fireplace since our camp in Lake George, so in yet another aspect, I’m coming full circle.  The smell and sound of a freshly stuck wooden match still reminds me of my grandfather.

I debated whether or not to bring the woodsplitter south.  For a brief insane moment I 
considered selling it, and ran the idea past Larry, who looked at me like I’d lost my mind.  What was I thinking?  We’ll always be playing with firewood.  Larry loves to drop trees and work with his chainsaws and I find splitting to be very zen.

Meanwhile I’m grateful for having a warm, toasty house, the fact that we had more than enough firewood to get us through the winter, and I’ll welcome the mud when it resurfaces.  I don’t want to irritate Mother Nature any further.