I love to chop and split my own firewood. I live near a nature trail, so aged lumber is in ready supply. It's just a matter of harvesting it. Splitting the wood with a hand ax is great, natural exercise - no need to go to the gym after an hour of swinging that tool. I use the wood in the small fireplace I have in my bedroom. A warm, cozy fire on a bitterly cold night is one of the few pleasures I take from winter.
A friend had given me and old, wood-handled ax last year and it had served me well for the last two winter seasons. I kept it in an old shed of sorts in an abandoned lot next to my apartment. The "shed" had no door but adequately held the ax and the wood I split there. I never thought of hiding it - after all, who would even think of stealing such a thing?
Well, someone did!
With the latest round of frigid weather, I needed a fresh supply of firewood to burn. So, I went to my little shed to split some for use. When I got there, I went to the spot where I store my ax. It was no where to be found. Figuring that as absent minded as I can be, perhaps I left it somewhere else in the shed. I searched in vane - nothing. After I exhausted all possibilities of where it might have hid itself, I realized that it was simply gone. It certainly didn't walk away on its own. Someone must have seen me use it and figured that they could secure it for themselves with an easy five-fingered discount. Bye-bye ax.
And, it was damned cold - I need that wood!
So, it was off the local Home Depot for a replacement.
I hadn't been to the store in quite some time, especially to buy a tool like an ax, and I couldn't remember where they kept them. So, I decided to ask one of the bright yellow-shirted Home Depot assistants who was congregating near the front checkout area.
"Where can I find an ax", I inquired.
With a quizzical look on his face, he responded, "an ax"?
"Yes, an ax".
Making a chopping motion like he was raising one over his head, he said, "like this kind of ax"?
"Exactly", I assured him.
He paused to think for a second. I could only imagine that, for the life of him, he couldn't figure out what I could possible want with an ax. Taking one look at me, perhaps he thought that I would use it to murder someone and dismember their body.
"I'm not sure, sir. Let me ask my supervisor", which he then preceded to do.
The supervisor jumped right in said, "Of course we have them. Follow me, sir. Right this way".
While he led me to where they were located, he made sure that I wanted a full-sized ax and not just a hatchet. I assured him that I did, indeed, need a whole, entire ax. I found exactly what I needed and $30 later, it was mine. There would be warmth that night.
I suppose the moral of the story is that when you need information, you need to ax the right person.
That is all.