I wrap cold fingers around a hot cup of tea in an attempt to convince myself that I don’t really need to light the wood stove in the kitchen. The weather has been warm for too long; I no longer regard the return of the cold with joyful acceptance, but weariness and a mild dread born of wood stove-lighting laziness. A few weeks of weather like the beginning of spring and I’m already going soft.
Finally, I admit to myself that I have at least a half day’s worth of internet work ahead of me (I only get a signal in the kitchen wagon), and light the stove with wood we scavenged from the construction site across the street last week. The foreman had been happy to give it to us. “Now we won’t have to move them around any more,” he told the Beard happily when he’d asked if we could have all the pallets that were laying around.
In teams of two we’d carried pallets across the street, piling them into skeletal towers next to the circle saw. They were too heavy to lift onto the saw table alone, so one person chain sawed them into smaller pieces while a second used the circle saw to hack them down to oven size. It never ceases to amaze me that you can even dumpster dive heat.
It’s dumpster find of the week and recycling for the apocalypse all in one. If you heat your home with wood, there is no end to free scraps you can get a hold of. Construction sites are full of pallets and old bits of lumber that make great kindling and foremen who’d be glad to have a smaller trash bill. After a big storm look around to see if any big trees have gone down on property whose owners would be happy to have you haul them away. And storm or no storm, people are constantly removing trees from their property, and most of them don’t have a need for the wood. Store it in yer pretty little shed for 2-3 years, and you’ll have all the free heating material you can handle.