Last week was mainly spent on two things, the pre-Christmas relative visits and cutting up wood for the stove. I don’t know if it’s me getting older but long distance driving seems harder and harder as years go by.
I had jobs in the past where I drove over a thousand miles in a week and thought little of it. Now a two hundred mile trip to my mother leaves me like a wet dishrag and a week where I basically spent three days driving leaves me in need of a holiday! To all those professional drivers out there – HGV, Coaches and Reps, RESPECT!
Shame on Us!
On one trip we stopped at a lay-by on the A55 in an area of outstanding natural beauty. Mountains, meadows and the sea all add to a very special place. Yet by the lay-by it was like a rubbish tip. Bottles and cans, fast-food boxes and plastic sacks. Up in the trees were yet more plastic bags, shredded and caught on the branches.
Everywhere we lived we’ve tried to leave the land better than we found it. Turned bare grass exercise yards into gardens, deepening top-soil and providing habit for wildlife as well as rest for the soul. I was really proud when we left Crewe that the soil on my allotments was improved and deepened, that whoever took them on would grow more and better due in some part to my efforts.
Where we are now, we and our neighbours are working hard to improve the environment. As we plant trees and windbreaks we increase the bio-diversity, improving the pasture to support more livestock because people need food. Helping nature to be all it can be.
Then I look at a lay-by where so many of my fellow travellers on the planet obviously don’t give a fig. Animals know better than to foul their nests – why don’t we? I really do wonder if it’s all worth while and we’re trying to turn back the tide. I’m glad in a way I didn’t have my camera with me to take a photo of the rubbish, it’s so depressing.
One day was spent cutting up wood into suitable sizes for our woodburner. A couple of years ago we felled some trees and stacked the cut wood. It’s now well seasoned and just needs logs splitting and poles cutting into length. After a few weeks in the sheltered wood store they’re ready to burn.
There’s something really satisfying about using a fuel to heat the house knowing we’ve planted more trees to replace those used and soak up carbon. Even the ashes are a valuable fertiliser.