Helen has had me working very hard the last two days. The weather has broken and with the warmer temperatures Helen is anxious to get the yard cleaned up. I've been taking down some trees and trimming others while Helen started on the lawn and then moved into the adjacent areas. Last year We got a wood chipper that I thought would make our work easier and allow me to get rid of the trimmings without burning. It is not doing the job. It chips wood of the proper size very well, but it will not take the miles of vines that we have in the yard, nor will it take the thick branches and trunks of trees. We ended up with a burn pile again, and it works particularly well. I have a secret method that burns the wood very quickly. Well not a secret, but a very efficient way. A few years ago I noticed that at large construction sites where a whole forest is taken down, they use a huge blower powered by a big diesel engine. By feeding large amounts of air into the fire, it burns very hot and takes everything, fresh green wood included. I use a leaf blower stuffed into 10 feet of stove pipe. It gets so hot that the wood burns rapidly and the heat even fuses the sand into pieces like meteorite. We have started, but the process will continue for a long time.
A couple of weeks ago I posted the story of the bobcat that the neighbor photographed outside his pool enclosure. A few evenings ago I took Sandy out for her late evening walk to the area we use beside the house. She stopped suddenly and would not step foot into that area. The next morning she did the same thing and I had no idea why. This morning in the dark hours before dawn I took the three dogs out and they ran right into that area. I heard a noise from 20 feet up in the trees and a thud as it hit the ground, then it ran off with a lot more speed than a raccoon can generate. I cannot prove that it was the bobcat, though the neighbor says they've seen it a few times but only caught the photo once. We have see raccoon a lot of times, and when the dogs appear, they just scamper higher up the tree. A small Yorkie or Maltese might be in trouble, but I'm sure my pack of Labs is safe.
Enough for now. This sore, old man is going to turn in early.