Thursday, March 13, 2014

Odds & Ends


I finally made it on the road at truck driving school. Unfortunately, I believe they’re trying to get some of us enough hours that they can give us the boot. Of course, if the school closes soon (which some speculate, including me) it may be just as well. There’s a lot of crazy crap going on there these days.

I didn’t like the little bit of winter that came back on us, but we only got a dusting of snow, so I shouldn’t complain.

I have a tree with a limb rubbing the roof, and another limb rubbing the top of the chimney. I also have another tree with a limb ready to grow into the little stained glass window in the peak of the bedroom ceiling. Both trees also need cut for other reasons, so that little activity is coming up soon. To get ready, I cut to length a short oak log that was lying where one tree needs to fall. I put the first 20” chunk in the wheelbarrow and the one piece completely filled it. It was all I could do to push it 50 feet up a short grade before taking a breather. Then I pushed it the remaining 75 feet of lessening grade, to where I wanted to split and stack it on an existing pile, dumped it out and took another breather. I then returned to my starting point and replayed the action three more times. I also cut a couple double lengths in half that were lying by the pile already. I called an evening for manual labor at that point. MAN I’m out of condition! I took the dog on a moderate walk afterwards; she really enjoyed it after so long penned in the house by foul weather.

The next evening, I took the pooch for another walk, but all she wanted to do was sniff and look and listen. I had to nearly drag her along, even though that excursion was shorter than the one the day before. I noticed a tiny bit of soreness in my hips from pushing the barrow the evening before. After scooting the pooch in the door, I split and stacked about half the wood that I’d moved the day before. When I finish splitting the rest, and cut a couple dead sassafras near the house, I may have enough to finish the face cord I have started, then I’ll advertise the stack for sale. I must say, it was nice to be able to do a little something outside for a change, including a little porch-sitting. Had it been warmer this evening, I would have split the rest of the oak, but it will hold for another day.

I noticed that our driving book teaches to stop your truck far enough behind stopped traffic that you can see their rear tires. That would be good advice for auto drivers, too, and would prevent a lot of chain-reaction rear-endings at stop lights if everyone did it. I think it would work out tom about a car-length for most auto drivers. The state suggests at least HALF a car length, but that really isn’t enough, despite that fact that many folks don’t even allow that much.

My stepson is working on my taxes this year. I thought he could just plug the info into the computer and voila! Nope, the government has to make it more complicated than that. I’ll try to do my own next year. I always used to do my own until I sold some property and the feds “simplified” the forms so much that I felt intimidated by them.

Back on the driving school – one instructor quit last week with no notice, one turned in his notice yesterday and, in desperation, the manager is planning to approach a former instructor that he’s already fired FIVE times. Yep, there’s trouble right there in River City and that starts “T” and that rhymes with “G” and that stands for “GREED.” (The owner doesn’t want to spend any money and lies like a rug.)

Needless to say, the natives (students) are restless! However, “This too shall pass.” © 2014

1 comment:

Sunnybrook Farm said...

I hope you get through it before the place folds. That manager may have a career in politics.
Cold and windy here, down right miserable to try and do any work outdoors but it is supposed to stop tonight.
I use wheelbarrows everyday but pushing a heavy load up hill is not easy no matter how often you do it. I try to plan all my firewood to where it goes down hill to the truck then I truck it up on a high place where it goes down hill to the house in the winter, it didn't take me long to realize not to put it below the house. I even built that bridge up at grade with the house after shoving it up hill a couple years.
Live and learn.