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I've been colleting canes from all over the world for years and that was fun. At one point they numbered more than thirty.

Then one wintry day several years ago we were visiting some friends and she showed me her grandfather's hand-made cane, which he had used, as had her father. Therefore to her it was priceless.

That was the beginning of my hand-made cane project, little realizing that I would eventually crank out more than fifty.

I began looking for the "perfect" stick alongside the road or the paths where we walk, hoping to find one similar to what I had seen while visiting. However, none of them suited me so I decided to purchase knobs and/or handles and attach them to the "shaft/stick" with double headed dowel screws.

Cane #1 served me well, until I found a more striking-to-look-at stick, near the path where we walk, and decided to make Cane #2. I, however, continued to use Cane #1 for my twice-daily trips to the mailbox, but used Cane #2 for most of 2013 and the first six months or so of 2014.

I quit making the 2013 canes in Sept with Cane #20, simply because of falling temps and 20 was a good place to quit, I figured.

I kept Cane #1 in the front closet for those mailbox trips and Cane #2 in the car . . . all winter long . . . and spring 2014. But then, summer arrived and I not only still had some FOG (found on ground) sticks left over but also began searching . . . through burn-and/or-headed-for-the-wood-chipper piles. I even knocked on front doors asking home owners if I could look through that pile of tree limbs laying on the ground near their curb. I also ventured out into the countryside around here, including several local cemeteries (with permission) looking for those sticks that would, perhaps make the next perfect cane. Those searches were not always successful, for many times, I ended up chopping those limbs into much smaller pieces and sending them off to the local land fill . . . where many of them were headed in the first place, I might add.

Since 20 was a good number for 2013 I figured it would work for 2014, also. And with Cane #40, made from leftovers I quit for the year.

I put all my cane making tools and supplies away for the winter, properly labeled (of course) until next spring.

But then something significant happened.

a) My brother, living in the hills of TN, sent me three boxes of "sticks" and right away I knew they were special.

b) I wondered if maybe I could do some hand bark removal with my wood chisels and sanding here in my recliner . . . and oh how I've enjoyed that. During November and December I was able to add to the 2014 collection by ten canes . . . with Cane #50 being one of my all-time FAV canes.

I still do the cutting-to-length and stain/polyurethane applications in the garage, but do all the remaining work here in my recliner. When the cane needs dry time, I bring it into the laundry room, many times leaving it overnight.

So Cane #50 - Osage Orange - was my final cane for 2014.
 

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