A very Busy week

I haven’t really written since Father’s day, and I can feel the backlog somewhere in my head. Monday morning was the big windstorm in Garretson, and Dad and I have been helping as much as possible there.
Dad hauled four commercial van loads of wood back to the farm from my Brother’s place in the last two days. The wood will keep us warm during the winter of 2016-2017 he says. It needs to dry over the next year and a half in order to be ready. So he’s busy unloading the last load today.
I’m whipped. Last night I was too wired up to go to bed before midnight. This morning, I woke up at 6 and talked on the phone to a dear friend. I then went back to bed, and just woke up at noon. I talked to my Aunty M, and then Dad came up from unloading one of the vans to catch up with me.
Monday, with many many breaks, I helped trim branches off of fallen trees. This I did mostly with a lopper, and others hauled the branches away. I also helped rake a bit, and load some of the wood. Others were working on the roof, getting a several hundred pound tree off of it. Sadly, when one of the logs came down off the roof, it took one of my Brothers with it to the ground.
He was covered in blood, and starting to bruise, and his fall was reported by a news crew who happened to be recording just off the yard. All work stopped for about an hour, as we took care of my brother and got busy.
The work Monday evening was subdued. I was more worried about both my brothers than about getting much accomplished. My youngest Brother, the homeowner, had to fell a healthy tree to make room to fell the destroyed tree. He was working with a vengeance, and I was worried about what was going on in his head.
Dad and I drove back to the farm at one point, and unloaded his van. I got cut by one of the bow saws, and headed to the house to get a bandage on it. It made the rest of the night’s work a little tender.
We finally got Dad’s van loaded again in town, and headed home for the night. I don’t remember sleeping Monday night, but I must have, and we got going again as early as possible yesterday.
Yesterday, I was hurting pretty much, so I became in charge of a lively two year old boy. He is one of the apples of my heart, and did not understand that he couldn’t be where the action was. For a little while, we let him be with the group, but at one point, I grabbed him and took him to the house to read stories.
Note to self: get some kids books downloaded to your tablet!
After a snack, and no nap, the wee one needed to watch what was going on. So we sat on the ground, and I explained that I couldn’t let him go as I held him. I pointed out the debris being thrown off the roof. I showed the saws and tools the others were working with, and I showed him his Daddy getting ready to cut down a tree in the front yard. So, we went back up to the porch so he could watch his Daddy work on the tree.
Poor wee mite, I told him that we were all working so hard because we love him so much. He just doesn’t understand how overnight the whole world could turn upside down. I don’t blame him, I don’t either.
Every time he went in to go potty, he would switch on a light switch. I had to explain that it was broken, and people were working very hard to fix it. His little eyes looked up at me, and it broke my heart that I couldn’t fix the fear in them at that point. This little man has a nightlight in his room you see.
Yesterday after family members from as far away as Sioux Falls and Worthing got off of work, they came in to help. My great-nephew came in as well to play with my nephew. I noticed the differences immediately. They both weigh about the same, but the one boy, the great nephew, is five while the other is just two.
All in all, it took a few more hours, and a lot more work to get the two trees in the front cut down, and keeping an eye on two active boys needed more hands than just my own.
Thankfully, there were enough hands on deck, to help with so much of the work that was needed.
There’s more work to be done in Garretson, so much more. There are many families with no one to help, and those are the most heart-breaking of all. Our family, after a lot of the work was done on Brother’s property, went to help another family out. I stayed to wrangle young boys, and the ones working on the roof stayed because they were busy. It was after supper when the power line to the house was re-attached.
Dad and I left before 8, and got home to our own supper and beds.
I’m not going to town today, because I need to catch up on our own place here at the farm. While we didn’t have damage, we do have critters and chores that need to be done.
All is well, at least for the moment,
Louise Ann Benjamin


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