The fresh geen pine needles indicate the force of the wind during the storm. I haven’t yet been up on the roof, since it’s not over yet by a longshot. It’s already rained about six inches. I’m guessing there is some flooding and washouts down the way, not to mention downed trees. The logs above were all carried to the hermitage this morning, waiting to be cut down to size and chopped up and stacked ever so neatly. Meanwhile…
Meanwhile, I’ve been out multiple other times in the downpours, both yesterday evening and this morning, on the path leading up the mountain, cutting channels across to take the water off to the side lest the whole mountain be washed away. It might not seem like it, but there’s an awful amount of water quickly flowing through these channels.
There are more, but you get the idea with these two pictures.
Doing stuff like this is not a penance, but rather, this reminds me of my childhood, when playing on the edge of the gravel road during horrific downpours meant learning how to build levees, weirs, and dikes and dykes, not to mention dams and reservoirs that were really quite magnificent. I knew I had done something altogether awesome when the traffic would skirt around my water world, even for days. And I was all of perhaps four years old at the most. You never know when past experiences will be useful later in life. In this case, instead of using my hands, I was able to use the neighbor’s cutter mattock, that is, with axe and adze, both sides very beneficial.
When I do little projects like this, my mind also turns to those who are in prison for years on end, who see almost nothing of nature. What a joy it would be for them to do something like this, collecting firewood or accomplishing a bit of erosion control.
In fact, I’m wondering if Father MacRae would like to come here when he gets out of prison, and I think he will get out, the sooner the better. If his bid for an appeal is accepted by the judge at his upcoming hearing, and then the actual appeal goes through, well then, things would happen at lightning speed and he would be out the front gate of prison without hardly having a chance to say goodbye. He would be shoved outside the gate, with absolutely nowhere to go.
He could come here for some weeks — or however long — just to get a hold of what it means to be free again, a chance to have some quiet time in the mountain forests for the first time in almost twenty years, a chance to pray before the Blessed Sacrament, a chance to investigate one’s options, a chance to write, a chance to – yes – do some manual labor should he like to do that too.