Tuesday, October 19, 2021


It's been over two years since I wrote a blog post entitled WOODSHEDDING (October 10, 2019). If anyone told me that it would be this long till I picked up the thread of that blog post, I wouldn't have believed them. I didn’t mean to leave the drive shed without a roof for such a long time. To be honest, it does have a roof of sorts, because I covered the shed in heavy vapour barrier and stapled it to the frame of the roof. It has made a splendid cover, which has the benefit of being transparent; therefore I haven’t needed to install lighting in the shed. Today I awoke with more energy than I've had in weeks. It was a warm, sunny day at Five Acres, and I hadn't finished raking the leaves on the driveway. I'd been chatting and laughing with my friend Natalka in the morning. We'd been talking about death, and I said if I thought I was about to die in the next minute or two, I'd get the heck outside, because a corpse on the floor is never much of a selling point for any house. So, after we stopped laughing, I went outside to rake the leaves, and wandered over to the shed. There's a pretty dead beech tree right beside it, so close, in fact, that it would be difficult to install a new roof: the tree is shaped like the letter Y, and both of the trunks overhang the shed. Since I was already outside, I figured I didn't have to think about death so much, and I began to wonder how I would take down the tree, if I absolutely had to. I devised a plan, Plan A, that involved cutting through one of the forked trunks first, at a vertical angle that would permit the trunk to drop straight down if necessary. Luckily my larger chainsaw was sharpened, oiled, and the battery was charged. Plan B was that the trunk would fall against the roof frame of the shed, which was near enough that the trunk would not have time to pick up much velocity. We went with Plan B. Two minutes later, that trunk was lying across the shed roof like a pair of antlers.
Best of all, no vapour barrier was harmed in the process. A few quick cuts and that trunk was next year's firewood. I charged up the chainsaw battery, took a few photos, and I was back for round two. The second trunk was much taller, quite twisted, and it looked as though it had been hit by lightning. This time I opted to cut it horizontally, four feet from ground level, where it was just one thick trunk. This was a much harder cut, so I decided to cut through 85 per cent of the trunk and see which way it started to lean. Frankly, as long as it didn't lean in the direction of my car, I thought I'd cope. The saw cut widened almost imperceptibly, indicating it, too, would fall towards the shed. I got my smaller chainsaw and made tiny cuts on the 15 per cent of the trunk that was still attached. As soon as I heard the slightest cracking sound from that trunk, I jumped far away from the tree, and in a moment or two, the trunk severed on its own and this very substantial limb landed neatly, perpendicularly across the peak of the shed roof.
I decided to come inside and not tempt fate any further. Tomorrow's another day.

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