I grew up in pine tree country. My little town was a pineply town, where folks made plywood out of pine trees. On the country highways, beside the pine log trucks, you’d see the trucks of odd-lot wood, scrub trees and other “billets” on the “billet trucks”. My late grandfather worked for a company that sold cross ties to the railroad. Once in a while, I’d get to go to sawmills with him, small operations in which folks turned timber into lumber and ties. I remember huge stacks of rail ties, upon which I was forbidden to climb. I remember the sound of blade slicing into wood, a high-pitched, persasive, chill-fall-day, and yet welcome sound.
I remember the smell of flying chips of wood, and the feeling that the world rotated on its normal axis.
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