Used to be a ‘new’ Jersey Girl   : now A Colorado Girl

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Fire Woman

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Fire Woman. My self-proclaimed-Indian-style name. Well…Rick calls me that too. No pyromania; and not like the little girl in Stephen King’s old book, Firestarter. No, this is different.  I just have a knack for getting a fire burning nicely. [See last night’s fire above and see if you don’t agree!] I couldn’t resist building a fire even though it wasn’t that cold last night, but after nearly 3 inches of rain during the day it just felt a bit chill and damp.

I love wood fires. There is something so much warmer, more bone-penetrating about that kind of heat. A nice fire can also take the place of television. Before we had television at the cabin, our fireplace served as “cabin TV.” Staring into the ever-changing pattern of flames is mesmerizing; relaxing.

Back when we used to tent camp, I would be the first one up in the morning to build the fire. Rick always got up after I had the fire giving off shimmering waves of heat. He isn’t as good at starting fires. You can’t just throw a log on the fire with a little bit of paper underneath it and expect great things to happen. You have to build it, starting with a good foundation [much like building a relationship] or it’s not going work.

You start with some tightly wadded up paper. Next, a couple of sticks of fatwood if you have it. On top of that goes tiny kindling; like small twigs or shards that fall off the log after splitting it. Something that will burn easily. Larger sticks come next with plenty of air space left in between. Finally, on the very top,  a nice fat log. Now when you light the paper, you should have a roaring fire in a matter of a few minutes. And, just like any good relationship, the fire needs nourishing and building up from time to time. You must keep an eye on it. Keep nice coals at all times. Don’t let the fire go out unless you want it to.

Hmm…I hadn’t really meant to wax philosophical on you this morning when I started this post. I was just going to write about my love of wood fires. The more I wrote the more I could see parallels to a relationship. There might be flame, but without something to support the flame, the fire will go out. A relationship takes building, nurturing, watching over, tending, fanning [every once in a while!], new fuel—just like a fire. And, just like a good fire, it warms you to your very bones. Whoa, that was deep for this early.

I guess Rick and I have done a pretty good job of tending our home fire since we just celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary this past month. Hard to believe it’s been that long. Hopefully, my next post [in the works now] will be about our WICKED-ly good anniversary. In the meantime, keep your home fires burning brightly!

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