Sunday, February 23, 2014

chipping away

The big thaw revealed plenty of branches down. Quite a mess. The front yard, the little yard by the driveway, the back yard.

Some we will burn when it dries out. The biggest drops I could not move and some trees still have chunks hanging in them. We will get that cleaned up later.

For now, neighbors loaned us a chipper. Putting branches into it had me remember a couple of times in NY life when loud equipment was used.

My dad died when I was 14. The summer before he passed we visited our families in Missouri. At the time his brother lived in a huge house on 20 or so acres. There was work that needed to be done with trees and branches, and my dad asked me to take up a chain saw and make cuts with it. My uncle was there too. I remember asking why...why would I ever need this knowledge?! And I remember being a bit outraged. My father told me he might not always be around to do that sort of work and that it would be a good thing for me to know how to do. My uncle agreed. So chain saw I did.

I had friends who had an agreement for years. They lived on an oversized lot, filled with old trees. Branches fell or were trimmed out on a regular basis. After their son was born, whenever she was feeding the baby, he was outside feeding the other baby: the chipper. He would jump up and say "must feed baby" and run out the back door.

Funny how memories from doing a simple task are dusted off and shaken up over the roar of a machine.

And now we have our own little bit of mulch. And a bigger pile started for a burning. Which brings up an entire different set of memories, burning things that need it.

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