“One small crack does not mean you are broken, it means that you were put to the test and you didn’t fall apart.” –Linda Poindexter
Almost two years ago I found this chunk of wood washed-up, discarded, and soaked throughout with many splintered pieces. To many it would likely be dull, ugly and meaningless appearing. To me, the brain began churning. It really was just simply an ugly chunk ~ good for nothing but to wash back out into the water, weather more storms, only to be forced back onto a desolate area by another storm, then walked over and around by animals and people. And it really was seriously ugly with several partial branches still intact ~ a real mess….. but kind of interesting at second glance.
So, making three return trips I finally devised a way to single-handedly bring this really ugly heavy treasure home with me.
I took it to the cabin of a neighbor who loves to do woodworking projects, and he was glad to add it to his ‘to-do’ list. The first issue was allowing the wood to completely dry throughout. About a year ago he began the sanding process, which turned out to be stop and go, as he would hit spots which were still moist….so back to allowing the chunk to sit and attempt drying. The issue is here in our area, we seem to have more rainy days than dry, sunny ones. So, this process drug into the second year ~ all the while me running over to his cabin on sunny days, opening the garage and placing the chunk out in the sun ~ my neighbor travels a lot, but when he returned home he would go back to his hit and miss sanding attempts.
I finally took a long look at the chunk one day and told my neighbor I’d be satisfied to just take it ‘as it was’ at that point. He adamantly insisted I leave it and allow it to continue drying and he would keep sanding and tweaking its imperfections, then finish it off with the stain and polyurethane process. At the completion point he’d be happy to present it to me free of charge.
Into two years……okay, I was ready to bring the Chunk to my cabin regardless of how it looked. It had a pretty smooth finish at this point, but during the drying process it had cracked and still could literally use a little more drying and a tad more tweaking on the sanding. Regardless, I made a decision one day when my neighbor was out of town, off the mountain or whatever you call it-to kidnap the Chunk. I recruited another neighbor to help me move the Chunk to its final home.
We got it in my garage so I could begin the stain and polyurethane process ~ which took me about a week, working on it at intervals.
So now the Chunk will be a special part of the cabin’s big porch ~ a foot stool to be used when in the hammock swing or as a beverage table, a book or laptop stand, a flower pot holder or most likely just something else the squirrels enjoy, or the Westies hike a leg on ~ oh well, I’m at least glad Chunk has found a home and got spiffed up in the process ~ his grains really are beautiful now and his little arms very unique.
“The whole world is, to me, very much "alive" - all the little growing things, even the rocks. I can't look at a swell bit of grass and earth, for instance, without feeling the essential life - the things going on - within them. The same goes for a mountain, or a bit of the ocean, or a magnificent piece of old wood.”
From a mountain girl’s heart