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Early 2017



It was good to get Christmas done and ...


... dusted and another year started. It's not just the short gloomy days, I had a Jehovan's Witness Advent Calendar but every door I opened someone told me to fuck off.


Tuesday Dave completed two years service. He also got the gift of a patch of land in Jockland which gives him the title of a Laird. We'll see if that's how he is addressed by all but if I listed all the little changes and improvements he has made you'd be impressed ... but not as much as the quality of our conversations:


Knock knock says Dave ...


... Who's there? I respond. Nicholas, says Dave ... you get the idea. After establishing that Nicholas who is in fact Nicholas girls shouldn't climb trees a further debate ensued. With Dave's Army and Health and Safety and my Police and Child Protection backgrounds we decided the following:


Knickerless girls should be encouraged ...


... to climb trees providing a) They are over 18 b) They have correct safety harnesses and finally c) Me and Dave stand underneath supervising.


Back to Timber ...


... we enjoyed planking another Erwin gem which appeared in the woods a while back. It was the always popular Apple. Obviously the bigger the better but not only is it rare to get one with a bit of girth as my wife tells me - the older the tree, the more chance of rot.


This one also had a couple of nails in .. why do these bastards hammer nails into trees? It also has a little spalt and a couple of holes but it will be snapped up pretty quickly.



The eight slightly longer boards - about 54 inches are cut at 1" the others 2"

A young woman was in her kitchen ...


... a pan of water was simmering on the stove as she was making boiled eggs for breakfast.


He walked in ... their eyes met. " Make love to me here, now," she said.


They made love on the kitchen table. "Couldn't resist me, huh?" he said.


" The egg timer is broken," she replied.

The picture below does not look remarkable ...


... but is in fact a modern miracle - Mark is actually cutting up some of my Walnut which has sat at Andover Down Sawmill since August 2015.


Mark is as knackered as his equipment and it's a daily struggle particularly on freezing winter days. Despite dodgy guts, sore feet to name but two of his afflictions he's always friendly and more upbeat than I would be in his leaky shoes!




The next battle will be to get the bastard to cut my Sweet Chestnut!

It's probably not good business but I ...


... but I must tell you about the improvements and great wood Kevin and his boys have at Surrey Timbers.


This year they have added some state of the art planers which has resulted in a fabulous display of rare timbers from all over the world PAR and looking their very best. You'll need deep pockets but if you want to see stuff no one else has, have a pop over Guildford way.


It was good to see Gordy ...


... over at the woods again, this time delivering some of his Lime and Beech. You get more than timber each time he comes.


He helped get one of the bits on the saw and cut some, never pausing for breath entertaining us with tales of yester year and plans for developing his yard ... shrewd old bugger is Gordon - we took notes!



The camera wisely focuses on the nice bit 'o Lime ... the old boys look better slightly blurred!

Let’s play the fire engine game ...


... a boy asked a girl.


How do we play? she asks.

Boy: I run my fingers up your leg, and you say “Redlight” when you want me to stop.

Girl: Okay :)

*Few seconds later*

Girl: Redlight

Boy: Fire engines don’t stop for redlights !

Yew is a stunning timber ...


... sometimes ! Other times it is full of shakes and due to the way it grows prone to having all sorts of things that have become encased inside. This one had a nail that killed a new blade and a lump of glass from a bottle.


If you have read all my blogs apart from going mad you will see in years gone by a golf ball sliced in half by the saw and a large flint that took 22 teeth off the chainsaw alaskan milling it.


But, when you get half a dozen planks like this you forgive & start counting the cash!


The Chairman of the Rambler's Association ...


... came to buy some wood. He went on and on and on !


Actually, there have been no boring or weary people chewing my ears. I had long ago noted that woodworkers are an honest lot but also very interesting ... they do say that if you don't know who the bore in the room is it's probably you ... doh!


One chap Aidan has been coming every few years since he was a 21 year old undergrad at Southampton University. 15 + years later the car is a lot posher but he still has a hankering for Lacewood and Elm.


In days of old when Knights were ...


... bold and loos were not invented. They dug a pit and had a shit and walked away contented was a favourite playground ditty of mine.


This is still an option if the use is infrequent but we decided to upgrade that with a proper toilet with the cistern fuelled by rainwater. To ensure the aforementioned pit didn't overflow we built a timber portaloo as below on a pallet so that it can be relocated with the tractor.



When located in a quiet corner of the woods we can offer a poo with a view!

As winter receded a much needed ...


... improvement to the biggest wood shed was done by Jay who one of my nieces had the good sense to snap up. He's a chippie, so everyone is trying to lure him to do stuff for them but I had the bait of a sniff of my timber!


He's good - company and skills wise and has offered to come back in the summer to help with the tree house as the old one was getting dodgy, so it's now demolished.



A cool cat on a not so hot tin roof has let a bit of light into the sheds - you'll be able to see what you are buying at last ... that might not be good for me!


Hope to see new and old ...


... visitors this summer. Got lots of good things for you to buy, rent or steal if you can hide them under your hat.


Usual days remain Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sunday but occasionally about other times and can stay late by appointment if you are rich or good looking, preferably both.