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Life & Events > Ashes


Secret Thing in the Fireplace reminded me of a conversation I had with a friend of mine about the ashes in my fireplace. She wasn't related to me, but considered herself part of the family, so when I would be away from home, she'd inform me that she was 'coming to the cabin for the weekend.' No invite, just coming. So once here, she'd let me know that I left ashes in my fireplace, and there wasn't a nice big stack of wood handy outside the back door. I finally told her that cleaning out the fireplace all the time is not exactly high on my list of priorities, and if she wants firewood, she can go get it off the big woodpile.

It always seemed like a strange thing to have to apologize for, especially since it's my house, so I decided to do whatever I wanted about it, and she could stay home if she didn't like it.

There was another friend who also had all kinds of opinions about fireplace management, and yet another couple who stayed here let while I was gone let me know that he figured out exactly what to prop open where and how to pile the wood on the grate in order to have the perfect fire. My gosh, you'd think it was important.

When my road from the highway is snowpacked, and if I'm in the mood to deal with the fireplace, I often sprinkle the ashes on the snow to accelerate melting because it's dark and absorbs heat from the sun.

But mostly I don't use the fireplace very often.

posted on Feb 16, 2017 6:25 PM ()


I guess your friends have redeeming features. I'd be inclined to set them straight as in "you don't have to come if things don't suit you." Da noive. However, a fire on a cold night does seem like something I would do if I had a fireplace and/or a cold night. My substitute is a hot bath.
comment by tealstar on Mar 30, 2017 9:01 AM ()
I always thought of that relationship with the one who complained that the fireplace wasn't all cleaned out as what parents must have with their adult children - some sort of obligatory caring about each other, but not much 'like' going on when conversing face to face. It was easier to care about the concept of her than deal with the reality of her.
reply by troutbend on Mar 30, 2017 10:45 AM ()
I'm inclined to agree with jjoohhnn. It's presumptuousness like that that can cure people of their wish to be generous. ..Out here the city has used ashes for melting snow, in years when the barges couldn't get through and there wasn't enough salt for the roads.
comment by drmaus on Feb 17, 2017 7:56 PM ()
Interesting crew of characters you deal with. I'd tell'me to stay the #### out of my house or shut the #### up if you can't resist squatting on my property.
comment by jjoohhnn on Feb 16, 2017 6:58 PM ()
How dare you run your place like YOU want to?!!?
comment by greatmartin on Feb 16, 2017 6:43 PM ()

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