Most Sunday mornings I cut wood with my friends Richard and Pierre on Richard’s homestead outside of Occidental. I call it chainsaw yoga and it is perhaps the only thing I do with such regularity. The routine is triply rewarding- we manage Richard’s woodlot by removing dead oak, supply ourselves with fuel to fire our wood stoves, and we get a good workout. It’s a great way to spend time together and I value our working rapport- Richard fells the trees, Pierre drags them to a clearing with the tractor where I limb the trees and buck them up for firewood.
I arrived early last week and spent some time admiring Richard’s strikingly simple barn entry. Richard is an inspired designer/builder and I always learn something new from his buildings. He has an unbiased mind and a deep feel for practical comfort. I especially love the outhouse/entryway to his barn/painting studio (pictured above), made of bent PVC and off-the-shelf steel framing and corrugated panels. The idea was so successful he incorporated it into his family’s house on the property, swapping out the corrugated material for thick, milky visqueen.