Danish Firestarter

firestarterI love have visitors, especially my family.  I’m very close with my sister and her family, so it was an amazing experience when they came to visit us this summer.  Well, unless your brother-in-law attempts to burn by garden and house!!

Not intentionally of course, and he felt very very very bad about the incident.

He smokes the pipe, which is not so common in the US unless you live in Woodstock, is a hillbilly carpenter or simple organic creature that feed off the land … the latter would most likely live in Woodstock area, have long grey beard and sing Joe Cocker tunes.

I do have to add that Woodstock is a great little area to visit, and is not stock in the 60’s.  A few interesting characters does float around, but it’s fun for the family.

However, my brother-in-law is Danish, and smoking the pipe doesn’t make you weird.  I have absolutely no problem with tobacco smoking visitors, but they do have to smoke outside, and he totally obeyed that rule.

Ever so often he would step outside, with a cold beer, and take in the landscape we live in and ponder on life’s great mystery … how do we get a pool installed.

He would leave the pipe outside, in a secure holder, and tap out the old tobacco in the soil. Little did he (we) realise that this would be a terrible mistake.  We had been blessed with 85-92 Fahrenheit (32+ degrees Celcius) and little rain.

One morning, as my wonderful wife was going to get breakfast bagels, she returned to the house quickly as she had noticed smoke in the flowerbed.  I walk out with a cup of water, but quickly realised that I needed a hell of lot more water.

burning_flowerjpgA large patch (2 x 6 feet) of the flowerbed was literally smoking.  As I placed my hand on the soil, it was too warm and some bushes had started to collapse under the heat.

The scary thing is, my brother-in-law had been tapping out the left-over tobacco for about 2 days, and it had grown into a large pit.

We all noticed the smell of burned wood the night before, but assumed it was there neighbours who had been partying and enjoyed a BBQ.  Nope!!

My dear brother-in-law spent the next two hours with the garden hose and a small shovel, making sure the ‘fire’ had been put out.  He was so embarrassed and shocked at the same time.  No of us expected this.  It just shows how carefull we have to be with fiercest, BBQs and tobacco.  The smallest amber can devastate large areas.

The positive was that, due to his guilt, he cleaned the front area of weed, fixed the other flowerbeds, cut the grass, swept the porch and put up our outdoor clothes drying rack.

…and he made a safe ashtray for his pipe and tobacco, with sand and rocks.

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