There are few things that make me feel so powerful and so dangerous at the same time as burning all the fallen twigs and branches that end up in the lawn and across my long country driveway. They get piled into a large pile as high as my head and crackle and sputter as I poke and prod to keep the fire in bounds. Maybe this exhilaration comes because as children we were warned and warned about playing with fire, and suddenly, now that we are all grown up we can!
I once stopped a scampering fire from racing across my back yard under a small forest of oak trees while living in another house. It had been set by the neighbor's children while playing with a cigarette lighter. Had I not looked out the window that windy day, it would have burned my house down in short time. The boys were barely 6 or 7 and really had no idea what damage they could have caused...including, perhaps, to themselves. My house was close by the scampering flames that raced across the brown leaves. The children had just run away realizing it was out of control. The hose was nearby and allowed me to rush out and drown the beast.
This time while I watched the flames and the floating ash, the flicker or woodpecker was shouting at me the whole afternoon hidden somewhere in the red and golden leaves. Perhaps because I was destroying a wing of his supermarket, the one with those rare gourmet grubs.
I do leave a percentage of the large limbs and trees for shelter and food, but I am a tidy owner of this strip of land and fear fires that could be started by lightning, especially after a long drought, and I would have to string 4 hoses together to get out to this area...which I did in safety for this little adventure.