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Our Olde House: March 14, 2022

Fallen Log

We had a large dead limb way up in a pin oak that was stubbornly hanging on to the tree.  I knew the limb was large because it was fifty feet up in the tree and it still looked large.  It was extended almost but not quite over the apartment, but I was pretty confident that when the bough did break the limb would fall straight down, and as luck would have it the limb did fall one night without touching the apartment.

Once on the ground this limb was the size of a small tree, with a diameter greater than I could put my two hands around.  It landed with such force that the end of it stuck in the ground six inches deep.  I asked Ms. Sherry if this was a branch or a limb; Ms. Sherry took one look at the pile of tree parts and said, that’s a log.

I expected this log to fall during some stormy or at least windy weather, but that never happens here.  It was very stormy and windy a few days before the log fell without any movement but it fell one very still, calm night when no one was looking.  I found my chain saw and added some oil to its reservoir and tightened the chain for this occasion.  A single mash of the switch and it hummed into life; it’s electric so roaring into life is not a thing.  The chain is still pretty new and therefore pretty sharp and I cut up those logs in no time; dragging everything out to the curb took much longer.

I have made some progress on my Mississippi Winter chore list; I was able to put foam insulation on about twenty feet of the hot water pipes closest to the water heater.  I would have done more but the size of the remaining hot water pipes was larger than the foam I had and covering more pipes would have entailed crawling farther under the house.

I also decided on a somewhat warm day last month that the red wasps guarding the front peak of the house must be gone after a few days of below freezing weather overnight.  I got my new shiny ladder out, leaned it up against the house and proceeded up it to trim the foam and do a little trim painting.  Instead I got the day’s Mr. Smartypants award because there were red wasps flying around me before I got halfway up the ladder, so down the ladder I went.  Apparently red wasps never leave, or at least not yet anyway.

I have managed to mow the back and front green stuff, mostly just to pick up the leaves a couple of times since Christmas.  The backyard mowing project always entails a slow walk around picking up the thousand twigs that have fallen since my last slow walk around.  I did take my little mower and attack the far back corner to get it so I could see it well enough to use the big mower, but not quite yet; there are a few discarded chunks of concrete that are poking up out of the ground that will need to be removed or buried deeper before the big mower can be used.

Winter in Mississippi seems to be about over with little progress on my chore list.  Oh well, chores are always being added to it so completing the list was never a realistic option.  I read that stuffing a brown paper bag and hanging it under your eaves will keep the red wasps away because they think it’s a hornets nest.  Since I already had the red wasps I thought it might work as an inducement for them to move, but I was wrong again.  Apparently, my red wasps have not read this article because they proceeded to land on the brown paper bag, which must have broken the illusion that the bag was an actual hornets nest.  So back to the drawing board to figure out how to paint the front peak of the house; maybe the red wasps will move by themselves.

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