Nov 5, 2019: Wood

On Friday, having put it off for far too long, I’m off over to mum’s to shift a bit of firewood.

These are the things you do when you think you should probably provide the means for you elderly mother to not freeze to death during winter. Actually, I’m not even providing the means. She’s doing that. I just ordered it and get to move it up the drive.

All 1000kg of it.

When I ordered it, I could have sworn it said 100kg. And I did think it was strange at the time as I knew the order consisted of 100 packs of heat logs but maybe they did only weigh a kilogram each. The one that I dropped on my foot a year or so ago and probably broke my toes with felt like it weighed more than that, but that could have just been the potential energy coming from the great height it fell from.

But it wasn’t.

It was 10 solid kilograms of wood.

And there’s 100 of the fuckers to move.

In our favour, though, is the weather. Or at least it was the last I checked. I daren’t look again. Because there’s one thing that this firewood doesn’t like, and that’s getting wet. And if it’s raining we – as in me and my half-blind mother – will have to manhandle a tarpaulin over it to keep it dry while we ferry logs into the garage. And no-one wants that.

Especially when you couple it with the fact that the deliver is anytime between 9am and 5pm so if the gods frown upon us, I could be doing all this by street light.

The last time we had the wood delivered, it was one of the scariest things ever as the delivery guy just let 1000kg of wood hang on the rear gate of the lorry which he had parked half on the pavement. The whole thing was sagging. The guy looked like a heart attack in a high vis jacket. It was awful.

So we’ve tried to avoid that as long as possible by making sure mum has used up every scrap of previous orders and a decent chunk of the pile of tree trunks and branches that my dad kindly took off a landscape gardener, only to then get ill and die leaving us to sort it. Until you’ve shouted “just break, you fucker!” at a massive piece of wood you’re driving a stake into you haven’t lived.

And the last time we shifted the wood, discovering that every single cart and wheelbarrow we possessed has something wrong with it, commenting on how dad used to do it on his own mum let slip that, actually, dad used to drive the Discovery down the drive, fil it with wood and reverse it back up.

Sometimes I think he’s watching over us having a bloody good chuckle. Especially as we inevitably forget which sack cart it was that the wheels just collapse on.

That’s something to look forward to.