Sunday, January 22, 2006

Fyre Fyre, Burning Bright ...

Before the drought

After many rainless months

It actually rained today, which is the first time in months. We've had a long, dry winter here in central Texas, and forecasts are that we're in for a pretty bad drought over the next couple of years.

This raises the issue of what to do with the cedar trees we've cleared here at the property. You pull them out of the ground using a tractor or Bobcat, then pile them up and let them dry out. When they're dry enough, ideally you burn them to the ground and bury the ashes under.

During dry times that's not possible, however, due to the possibility of a wildfire getting out of control. In talking with the neighbors, I learned that each of them at one time or another has almost accidentally burned down the entire neighborhood. This makes me nervous. The record so far is 45 acres burned out, with two fire trucks having to respond. That guy's house almost bought it.

So I sit here, watching the rain, hoping it keeps up for another day or two so I can burn our piles in safety. The ground's so parched just one good soaking won't do, the grass can still catch a spark and before you know it you're racing for the phone.

If it doesn't get better soon I might have to rent a chipper and chip it into mulch which, given the last scene in the movie "Fargo", makes me a little uncomfortable.


Denise said...

I saw one of the "Malcolm in the Middle" episodes not too long ago, and they had a ball with the chipper! They loaded a couch into it, a chair, papers, a watermelon -- you name it, they chipped and spit it all over the street. You could have a good time with one, if you had to!

It's been dry here, but it's been raining all day long. Like you, we're not taking any chances. A burn ban is still in effect for the county and should remain there for a while.

Those two pictures cannot be of the same place. That's unbelievable.

If you do rent a chipper, let me know. I got a few things I wouldn't mind mutilating into a million little pieces!

Saw "Walk the Line" tonight. Great movie.

Jill Phenix Avila said...

rained here last night... (San Antonio) and there was a fire today.. damn that little girl (la nina for the Spanish speakers)