The micro-beauties of the woodpile

Today was all about the woodpile — and a little more on snowdrops. Wood fires are amazing, but moving cured wood from the shed to the porch, and then from bags to the shed not so much.

There is a strange enjoyment, however, in stacking wood well — it is not a skill I have mastered. I am kind of entry-level apprentice. It’s not something we grew up with, the idea of a woodpile above the height of my head was pretty inconceivable.

I am pretty tall, today was a lot of work. Day four. Last day until Monday and I am pretty glad of that.

But there were lots of amazing sights in the wood pile and on the plastic bags some of the wood was sheltering in. This country is pretty slim on interesting bugs, but look at these

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Snails…I quite like snails. Those tiny slugs (you can see one in the fuzzy background) on the other hand, are fairly disgusting.

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This one was spectacular. It was a day of sun and then sudden rain and then hail and then sun again. I don’t know what combination of these things caused this strange collection of bubbles, but the Twilighty vampire snail was amazing:

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There was an astonishing absence of black widows, brown recluses, funnel spiders, scorpions … all those things that I worry about when working in sheds with old dusty wood. This country is so damn safe.

The damp, though, makes some pretty spectacular fungi. This one includes a gratuitous snail, and suddenly those shells make perfect sense:

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An amazing little guy raising his hands above his head saying oh no, not the woodpile…

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Wonderful velvety orange in a volcanic landscape sprawling across this log:

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And of course this place is full of old rusting things. This looks like it might have been some kind of jack, but I don’t think it is working anymore.

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These need no explanation.

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