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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Friday, July 14, 2006

oak stump

The old oak stump is finally gone from the yard – the one that I had been mowing around for several years. This stump was the remains of the oak tree that I had watched grow from a seedling in the shadow of a huge pine – this pine had to be taken out because it was killed by lightning.

The oak had been there at least 20 years and had grown to about 40 feet tall and about 24 inches through the trunk at the base. The main problem with the oak was that it allowed almost no grass to grow under it. All that was showing beneath the tree was a large network of roots, a few hardy weeds and bare ground.

About five years ago, the oak had been tied off with rope – to keep it away from the power lines – then cut and pulled down. The next several days were spent with the chain saw, cutting the trunk and limbs into movable, firewood-sized pieces. All except the very smallest of branches were cut this way and hauled to the backyard firewood stack.

The hauling was done in my hand-pulled yard cart and it was sturdy enough to haul even the heaviest trunk sections. The small sizes were stacked in the ready-to-use stack and the larger in the need-to-be-split stack.

Everything was moving along nicely when the “smash” occurred. I had grabbed one of the biggest sections of trunk and with a mighty heave, swung it over and dropped it atop the to-be-split stack. Through a slight miscalculation the tip end of my right ring finger was between the section I dropped and the one I dropped it on.

The pain was instant and nauseating. Although I was wearing leather gloves, I wasn’t sure the tip of the finger would still be there when I took the hand protectors off. It was still there but the nail was knocked totally loose from the nail root.

Although this incident happened at least 5 years ago, I remember it like it was last month. A Prompt Care visit showed that the bone wasn’t broken “they didn’t think”, a fingertip protector was put on and I was sent home to hurt for a while. It took the better part of a year for the nail to grow out and look normal.

This story then brings us back to the stump. It took about a year to kill the stump and then it was allowed to rot in the ground. It was deemed rotten enough to finally chop from the ground recently and with my present garden cart and ‘Betsy’ (the pick), I went out to remove this eyesore from the yard. It took several hours to chop out the rotten chunks of wood to down below ground level and haul them off, but the task is finally completed.

The yard will be much smoother and with less aggravation at mowing time. Everyone’s yard – and life – needs to be smoother. Our spiritual life can be much smoother with Jesus in control of it but this is a decision each person must make. ec


Blogger Bonita said...

My, there always seems to be digital injury, of one sort or another. And, it is always remembered.

My father lost the lower part of his little finger to a power saw many years ago. It was quite disconcerting when he'd rest that finger by his nose. It would look like the lower section was up his nose.

7/15/2006 12:13:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

bonita - It is amazing how much the tiny tip end of a finger can cause so much discomfort - and loss of sleep. I did chuckle about your Dad's finger. ec

7/15/2006 12:34:00 AM  
Blogger Granny said...

I know how much that hurt. I've done similar things and once someone dropped a bowling ball on my toe.

Thanks for your comment.

Bastille Day in Paris is probably not unlike Mardi Gras in N.O.

7/15/2006 01:07:00 AM  
Blogger thebeloved said...

I tripped carrying firewood when I was younger and had my own purple nail for over a month! Yeah, I never forgot.

7/15/2006 01:38:00 AM  
Blogger adannells said...

OUCH!! I am glad that your finger wasn't broken!

It is so wonderful when we trust God with the path He has for our life. We make ourselves miserable when we fight against it and want our own way. How much smoother and peaceful our lives are when we just trust Him. What a wonderful God we serve. May His name be praised always! :)

7/15/2006 03:13:00 AM  
Blogger Jayleigh said...

We have lived here for over 10 years now and just this year, two trunks rotted away enough so that they can be mowed OVER, not around. Weird that it took so long.

Your poor finger. My dad has a similar story, except it involved my sister and a rock flying toward the rock pile in the middle of the field. She flung it off the trailer and he... I don't know... was trying to catch it?

7/15/2006 09:09:00 PM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hi Mr Eddie ~~ OUCH !! You wont forget how much that hurt, lucky you had gloves on or it may have been worse. Glad you finally got the old stump out. That lightning was awfully
close too. Thanks for comments, I should post that Winter Dumpling recipe again when we are sweltering in Summer. I will try to remember.
Take care, Merle.

7/16/2006 12:43:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

granny - The bowling ball on the toe had to really hurt also, makes me wince just thinking about it.

thebeloved - Those purple nails do throb for a while - I've had to drill a hole in the nail a few times to relieve the pressure.

adannells - They told me that they didn't think it was broken - nothing to do for it if it was. Yes - may His name be praised always.

jayleigh - Different tree stumps rot at different rates - this one seemed to take a long time as well.

merle - Yes, without gloves I might have been without a fingertip. We are sweltering here, with temp going up to 98F today. We did have a storm come through last evening with a little rain - seems never to be enough. ec

7/16/2006 09:28:00 AM  

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