The Blue Boot

This is the pile of wood cut from my front yard. Not the debris, just the wood I salvaged. It’ll make awesome fires in the fireplace next winter - and a great opportunity to use splitting as exercise this coming spring.

This is the pile of wood cut from my front yard. Not the debris, just the wood I salvaged. It’ll make awesome fires in the fireplace next winter – and a great opportunity to use splitting as exercise this coming spring.

As I write this, it’s Saturday night, exactly one week after losing power. We had a very unusual October snow, dumping almost a foot of very wet snow on us. The real problem wasn’t the snow, but he fact that we still had most of the leaves on the trees. This creates a huge area to catch leaves and weigh down branches. We lost dozens of trees and many times that for branches. The limbs took down our power, and with it our water, lights, refrigeration, and, generally, life as we know it. I worked a little this week, maybe 30 hours in all. By itself, that is a major cut in what I normally do, but it felt very strange to have chunks of days allocated to using a chainsaw and not protecting my company’s data from harm (aka my day job).

Our house has been mostly dark, mostly cold, with a few limited assistances. We are fortunate to have a propane fireplace in the Florida room, and, of course, propane to use. Until yesterday, a propane delivery wouldn’t have been possible with all of the downed trees. So we cut trees, and cut trees, and cut trees. The pile of wood shown above is just from one part of the front yard. It was really a mess, but propane delivery could occur if needed.

After working for hours almost every day this week, my feet were absolutely killing me. I had set a podiatry appointment earlier in the week for Friday, although with a partner of my normal podiatrist. He was excellent as well, helping me to understand what was going on and why I had so much foot pain. More importantly, he has me on a regiment of a few activities and meds designed to help alleviate the pain for good. He sent me to our local New Balance store for OTC inserts and to the local CVS for anti-inflammatory meds. He also gave me some stretching / massage exercises to do with my thumb on the heal and instructions to roll it on a golf ball when sitting still, especially at work. Both of these are intended to break up the tissue, similar to a foam roller. I then ice it afterwards and continue on the anti-inflammatories for at least a few weeks.

Finally, the blue boot. I get to wear an uncomfortable, bulky blue boot to stretch the tendons at night. I’ve started off with a few hours, but with no lights and no heat, the huge number of blankets on the bed have made the first few nights not so successful. When power is returned, we should be able to dump many of the blankets in exchange for the electric one, making the boot effort more effective. For now, a few hours each evening, plus the inserts each day will be my main plan of attack. I’m also attacking the gym with a vengeance once power returns and showers are no longer a logistical chore to do.

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