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Weather experts call the storm that devastated much of Iowa on August 10 a derecho. Every time they say derecho I saw firewood. Here's why.

They say derecho, I say firewood.

That’s the tune I’ve been humming since weather experts christened the August 10 windstorm that blew through Iowa as a derecho. Also known to the citizenry of our state as #iowaderecho2020. If you don’t know what I’m talking about google those three words, watch a couple You Tube videos, and you’ll never forget the meaning of derecho.

They say derecho, I say firewood.

Living in northwest South Dakota for seven years has that effect on a person. Especially if you lived in an area where almost every home owner installs a wood stove to help with heating bills. Where chainsaw ownership is close to 100%. And where, from August through October, more people gather by the river to cut firewood than to be baptized.

Now you understand why when they say derecho, I say firewood.

Long time readers of this blog may remember how I affectionately referred to my husband as the man of steel. In the wake of the derecho he’s been cranking up the chainsaw so often, I’ve altered the spelling of his nickname to man of Stihl. He’s applying everything he learned in South Dakota about how to weld a chainsaw to the broken limbs, wooden yard light pole, and an entire cottonwood tree.

They say derecho, I say firewood.

I mutter those words every time my husband fills our clunker pick up with another load of branches. I watch him drives away toward the wood chipping station outside of town, and I calculate how long it would have taken to burn in our wood stove. Living for seven years in northwest South Dakota has that effect, too. It gives a person a different perspective, a sense of resourcefulness, and an appreciation for the gifts scattered throughout creation.

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