Saturday, June 11, 2011

My Husband the Woodcutter

My husband is away cutting wood in Happy Camp, California. His goal for this trip was 3 cords of Madrone for a client and then a cord and a half for his hunting partner. Have you ever dealt with green Madrone? It's very much like moving log-shaped boulders - heavy, dense, with a beautiful red color to it. We cut a load of it 2 weekends ago and over and over I thought, this Madrone sucks, it's too heavy, why do men love it so... and on and on, but I (mostly) kept a smile on my face, because I was outside, not working indoors and that's what I prefer, plus John is a good "boss." He never yells and we get pizza and beer when we are done.

My husband is all about the Madrone, but I prefer to deal with something a bit lighter like Fir or even better would be some of the Lodgepole that my in-laws have out at the back of their ranch. It's all stacked in a "deck," ready to be split with a borrowed splitter. This is the easiest possible wood practice - John cuts the lengths, I roll or carry them to the splitter where he sits on a log-stool and splits piece-by-piece as his dad runs the controls.  His dad is funny and whenever there's a break he makes jokes like, "The crack of dawn only lasts so long, but the crack of John lasts forever." My husband's pants are always falling down.

After the wood is split, we throw it into the back of a pickup. When there's enough in the pickup, John gets in and starts stacking it. He's very particular about the stacking and seems to distrust my stacking ability each time, until we get near the end and he says, "You are doing okay."  Doing okay is a compliment from John, as is "Pretty good for a town this size," when he finishes a meal. As I'm a person who is fairly confident in my abilities, I don't need a lot of compliments, but I do get prickly about having to prove myself over and over. I sometimes wonder if it is a test. Test this, you big dork... Okay, that was a joke...

John is a lot of fun to work with. He makes up jokes and songs and really enjoys the entire wood-getting process, even when it's the boulder-Madrone and he's splitting each piece by hand. He is very strong and I feel a certain sense of pride when I hear that crack! as the wood splits - my husband is like Superman, is what I think. I sure hope Superman comes home soon, because I've slept without him for 3 nights and just thinking about his lovely, freckled shoulders made me feel like crying this morning.

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