Sunday, January 20, 2013

A January Weekend

With those skilled at predicting weather forecasting an upcoming week of single digit temperatures, the weekend priority was to prepare both the cabin and our home for plunging temperatures. However, no weekend can begin without Friday's evening at the cabin; Kuma d.o.g. at my side, a fire in the hearth, a glass of wine, some classic music and the recliner. If Saturday is to be filled with work and chores, then Friday is for rest and relaxation; this one was no exception. Other than wind chimes clattering and ringing throughout the night as a constant wind blew in from the west, it was a very quite and peaceful night where both my dog and I got plenty of sleep.

Saturday included a trip to Tractor Supply to re-fill a 100 lb LP cylinder for the wall furnace and then a return to the forest to drop and cut up 4 mature locust trees for firewood. With temperatures in the mid-50s, it was almost too hot for the big man to cut, load, haul and split truck loads of wood in preparation for the upcoming cold snap but it had to be done. The resulting thaw made the trip back to the cabin almost impassable due to the mud. Even with 4WD, the truck wanted to slide off the trail. Thankfully, the heavy load of locust provide enough traction to get in and out without getting stranded.

By late Saturday afternoon, a well deserved nap and rest was awaiting and calling me back. Due to the mud, a decision was made to hike back to the cabin. Kuma d.o.g. didn't make this trip and was left behind to keep her from tracking mud on the floor. Arriving on foot and apparently without notice, a pack of wild dogs was surprised as I approached the cabin. At first, they barked and growled at me as if I was an intruder. Apparently my terse voice, attitude and rock projectiles convinced them to leave. I found the morning's fire still hot and alive in the hearth so it took little time to rekindle for my planned slumber. Not long after stretching out and falling into a deep sleep I was awakened by a racket on the porch. The pack of dogs had returned and were not content at just hanging out while looking for food; they began tearing cushions off the chairs and turning over the chair table. The .38 Special that accompanied me was all that was needed to humble the pack. I believe in live and let live and had no intention of shooting a hungry dog. However, the sound of multiple rounds of a .38 pistol unloaded on a porch was enough to make them scatter. A couple considered jumping the 10 feet off the front before having second thoughts and quickly scampering past me as they tumbled down the steps. All ran into the forest never to be seen again.

Kuma returned to stay with me Saturday night. Expecting cooler temperatures, I built the fires up and pulled an extra blanket out of the trunk. With temperatures outside not falling below 45 degrees, the cabin was almost too warm. The wind again blew throughout the night as if a front was coming in but the temperature never fell.

Sunday, I invited ManCamp charter member and builder/helper "Robbie" out to hang with me. Robbie had a knee replaced in 2012 and is scheduled for his other one to be replaced this week. I figured today would be the last time he could spend on 'cabin time' for a few months so having him out was not only long overdue but special.
The porch on a January afternoon

Robbie enjoying a movie while on cabin time

My friend Robbie on his last cabin visit before returning
to Columbus for a knee replacement

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