Pandemic, restrictions, authorities that can´t agree over what´s best for us, and postponed forestry shows. Sometimes you just feel that you want a break. A good beer in the sun, or in the shade if you ask me, is a necessary luxury to catch up with the situation and make some reflections. And of course, the beer can be replaced by nonalcoholic alternatives.


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Time for a break

I remember when I worked in former East Germany (DDR) in the early 90’s, operating a chipper after a storm. We were chipping the whole trees and the chips were left on site. The local forest workers, who cut loose the trees for us and then planted (with woodchips up to their knees) all drove the DDR-made Trabant cars. In those cars it was very easy to remove the front seats, which they did when the sun was shining. They sat there on their breaks – and drank beer.

Still today, I sometime think about them. How could they even think of drinking beer when working with chainsaws? How could the foresters allow it? As a guest worker from another country, I just turned my back and shook my head. I hope they survived.

As we wrote in an article last fall, you should never operate a chainsaw under influence of alcohol or drugs.


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Forestry is doing well after all

Actually, the forestry business is doing well for the moment. The industry is screaming for raw materials, the machine manufacturers are reporting they are at full speed in producing new machines. Also in North America business is good for the machine people. Forest contractors seem to be busy everywhere. So, maybe us forestry people shouldn´t complain?

There are other businesses that are struggling. I happen to have friends within hotel, bars and restaurants here in Jönköping, the Elmia-town. They love Elmia Wood and all the other trade shows that Elmia offer during normal years. The shows are the lifeline for the tourist-/visiting business in this town. Now, there haven’t been an Elmia event in a year.

Here in Sweden, the restaurants and bars have not been legally forced to close, but they have been under restrictions for over one year now. The last months they have had to close at 8 pm, meaning that there has been no point in opening some bars at all.

Do you support your local pub, bar and restaurant?

The way I see it, it´s the duty for us who work in businesses that are doing well to support businesses that are having problems. One way of doing that is to have a beer in a bar, pub or restaurant every now and then, and why not something to eat? It´s a good reason, even politically correct I would say. But of course, to do that they have to be open, and you must keep distance to people you don´t normally socialize with.

To keep distance has never been a problem for forestry people. So, for me, even if I have to sit there alone, it feels good in many ways to support my local bars and restaurants. Sitting there, sipping your beer, is an excellent opportunity to think about life and make big plans for what will be after the pandemic is over. It´s good to be prepared when that day comes.

By the way – when writing this article, I had to make a break to go and have my first vaccine shot against Covid-19. It had to be done, I see it as my first step towards normality.

Let´s hope everything turn normal again soon. In the meantime – do what you can to support those in your neighborhood who needs it.

Have a nice weekend! Sheers!