It's been seventeen years since I last lived somewhere with a log buring stove. I missed the rituals a great deal and now I'm a happy bunny. In the words of Henry Thoreaux: wood heats you three times: once when felling it, once while splitting it and once when burning it. He didn't mention carrying it up three flights of stairs (though fair play its still three times for me as I don't 'fell' wood. I hunt out fallen, beached, wood and dry (broken) palettes from the back of local stores).
My life is starting to evolve around wood. Making a bulk purchase isn't an option for reasons I explained in a previous blog on the same subject. So I am forced into becoming a professional scavenger / recycler. Yesterday I fillled up the van in an hour, at least a week's worth. When I got home I realised I didn't want to do twelve trips up the stairs (even as training for keeping up with the relentless uphill pace of Roberto on our occasional hikes). So I called my tennis partner, whom I had helped move house the previous week, to ask for a 'coup de main' after our coaching session. He obliged and I duly replenished my wood shed. A few hours later I went to pick up a veg box from a Xavier's house around the corner. He was busy unloading MASSIVE logs from the boot of his small car and pleased for the helping hand in unloading it. We made a appointment for Tuesday: me, him, my van, his chainsaw. (Do you think I should tell him beforehand that I live on the third floor wth no lift ?)