I really enjoy watching flames and we had a nice fire in the fireplace this evening. What do you see in this image?
Tagged With: Fire
Rapid Oxidation of Wood
Also known as combustion. Fire, if you will. My mom went with me to the farm this afternoon and we pruned some plum trees, cutting out black-knot (see Project 365 Extras). We burned the cut branches and this is from that fire.
Ashes to Ashes
We’ve got a bunch of boxes in the garage marked shred—old bills, checkbooks, business correspondence, that sort of thing—and we’ve been meaning to get rid of them for a while. There used to be an outfit that allowed individuals to drop off boxes of papers to be shredded for free (making their money from businesses) but they are no longer doing that. Well, what’s better than shredding? Burning. This little fellow didn’t suffer as he was consumed by the flames. Four boxes done. Six or eight more to go.
Burning More Papers
It was another productive Saturday, getting a few things crossed off the top of my to do list. It was also, if you will, the opposite of productive (i.e. destructive). We burned another three boxes of “shred” papers. It doesn’t save a lot of time over shredding and in fact, if we took them to someone with an industrial shredder, it would much faster. Nevertheless, burning is relaxing. There’s something about flames. I won’t say they’re cool, but if I did, you’d probably know what I meant. The boxes today had, among other things, canceled checks from 1979. I think it’s safe to get rid of those now.
After church today, Dorothy and her friends went downtown to visit another friend who is working on Capital Hill this semester and who also has a part time job at a book show near Eastern Market. They visited some other friends on the way home. I fixed a surf and turf for dinner—flank steak and salmon—and then started a fire going in our fire pit. Most of the kids stayed inside but Dorothy came out and chatted with me for a white. I had my camera and took quite a few pictures of the fire as we talked. I like the pale blue, plasma-like flames in this picture.
I released a few pounds of carbon into the atmosphere from the logs in which it had been sequestered (i.e. I burned the logs). This is part of the tree that I cut down on Saturday and I only burned one large batch today. It’s a little too warm to be having a fire but the weather is suppose to change later this week and it’s forecast to be cooler, so I’ll probably burn more over the weekend. One of my favorite things about having a fire is watching the sparks above the flames. They are, of course, very transient and you don’t get a lot of time to watch any one spark. Trying to get a picture that captures the movement as well as the transient nature is tricky because the only significant light is from the fire itself but above the fire, where the sparks are there isn’t nearly so much light. I think this one does a reasonable job and I like it well enough.
David’s Pig Roast
For at least a couple years my friend David has wanted to roast a whole pig. Thus weekend he finally got his wish. The original date was to be Saturday but it rained until about 9:00 and kept him from getting the early start he needed. So, he moved it to Sunday. By 6:00AM he had the pig up on the spit and the fire going under it. This picture was taken about ten hours later, around 4:00 PM and, as you can see, the pig is getting there.
Because of the change of day, I wasn’t able to stay and help eat any, but I couldn’t let the occasion go by without coming to take a few photos. It turned out to be a lovely fall day, perfect for spending time outdoors around a fire. I also enjoyed visiting with David, Joel, Chris, Theresa, and Lee, however briefly. It certainly got me thinking about the possibility of a pig roast of my own. Or perhaps a sheep or a goat.
I burned more wood today from the Colorado spruce that I cut down on October 6. I took pictures both when it was in full flame and ffter it had burned down a bit and was mostly embers, but still quite hot. I really love watching the movement in a fire. The movement of the air as it is heated to a shimmering temperature as well as the movement of the flames themselves and the occasional movement of the wood, as it settles. I also love watching the changing colors. The bright orange and the even brighter white of intense flame. The cool blue of the white ashes as seen under a star lit sky. Of course, like many things that are enjoyable to watch, the fleeting nature of fire adds to its appeal.
Baronessa’s Pizza Oven
There was a time, not really that long ago, when pizza wasn’t a known thing to many Americans. When my dad went away to college in the mid 1940s, he had never had pizza before. But New Haven had a Neapolitan community and he was introduced to what was called apizza (/əˈbiːts(ə)/, with the final vowel basically silent). Now, of course, there are many different pizza chains and generally Italian restaurants have pizza on their menu, even if pizza is not their main thing. There is an Italian place called Baronessa not too far from where we live and we’ve gone there off and on for years. It changed ownership a while back and the new owner installed a wood-fired pizza oven. The owner is rightly proud of the oven and enjoys taking diners back to the kitchen to see it. I’ve seen it before but having taken a good picture of it so I asked if I could do that this evening. He was happy to let me get a few pictures. It’s a bit hard, because the light levels are pretty extreme, dark except for the fire, which is very bright, but this one shows the pizza cooking on the left pretty well. If you’re looking for a good pizza, you could do a lot worse than visiting Baronessa on E. Gude Drive. And ask to see the pizza oven before you leave.
With closing on her mom’s house earlier today, I had planned on a celebratory dinner. Margaret already had plans to attend the Missions Banquet at church today, so we’ll have the real celebration next week. Cathy and I decided to go out, anyway, although we didn’t eat anywhere fancy. We went to BGR The Burger Joint, which was fine. The concept of a “gourmet burger” is something of an oxymoron, but it was a good burger, anyway. It was raining pretty hard but we decided to walk from BGR to the Barnes and Noble at the other end of the outdoor mall. We stopped along the way under cover at Copper Canyon Grill and I took a few pictures of Cathy by their fire. It’s a shame that they have to put up a heavy, metal fence to keep people from burning themselves, but I suspect either their insurance company or the local government insisted.
Andrew, Dorothy, and Rachel
Dorothy’s (and our) good friends Andrew and Rachel stopped at our house on their way home from visiting with her family for Christmas. We had a nice dinner and then sat around a roaring fire and talked about all sorts of things. I took quite a few photos of the fire but only a handful of the three of them. Neither Dorothy nor Rachel particularly like to have their photo taken. I got it over with early so they could relax. We really enjoyed having them visit and look forward to seeing them again.
I released some stored carbon back into the atmosphere this evening. It’s been cool for a while and I’ve been meaning to have a fire, so today seemed like the perfect opportunity. Also, I’ve been accumulating papers that need to be destroyed rather than just thrown away or recycled (i.e. things that have Social Security Numbers, bank account info, etc.). So, I took this opportunity to burn a box of papers, as well. When I was done with the papers, though, I just enjoyed the fire, watching the wood burn, watching the dancing flames, smelling the wood smoke in the cool, autumn air. It was lovely.
We had some friends over for dinner on the back patio this evening and I built a nice fire to keep us warm and to provide light when it got dark. Each of us had our own carry-out dinners and we sat relatively far apart. Nevertheless, it was good to be in actual company with others. I think I speak for everyone that it was a really enjoyable evening. From left to right, these are Josh, Julia, Maureen, and Bob. Cathy is out of the picture and of course I was taking it, so I’m out, as well.
David, Darius, and Maggie drove out from New Mexico, covering nearly 1,900 miles in two long days. It was a surprise for Cathy, who didn’t know they were coming until they called yesterday afternoon. Darius said he’d like to come visit us again and Cathy said that would be great. He asked, “How about tonight?” She was thrilled. So, they arrived late last evening.
This afternoon we went out to Rocklands for a while. It’s a bit chilly out but with their many fire pits and circles, it’s really not too bad. Darius was not so cold that he didn’t want a pop-cicle. Darius also enjoyed seeing the chickens and ducks, and one of the cats climbed up into David’s lap and sat there quite happily for a good while. I also took some pictures of Darius jumping between the huge tires they have in a kids play area.
When we got home we ordered carry-out from the Big Greek Cafe. Good times.