How to Make Fire

I wrote this in April of 2016. I don't know why I never posted it.... I just can't believe how tiny my little squirt was back then. Almost two years already that we have lived in CH. Time flies, when you're building fires and fuelling up on würst regularly. Enjoy the flashback.

- Ash


Now that Spring has arrived to warm our bodies from the winter cold, we spend most of our day in the forests or lakeside in Zurich Oberland (Zurich countryside). My husband grew up in this landscape and valley and knows it well. When we booked our flights from California to Zurich I asked him what he was most excited about showing our daughter in his home country. 

"Building a fire in the forest"

Our daughter is two, mind you.... And I come from a place where building fires outdoors is really never encouraged, and ONLY allowed in serious campground enclosures, on wide beaches away from any and all tree life, and in a permitted outdoor chiminea. Too many people I love have been effected by loss from wild fires in California. The near idea of striking a match in a heavily wooded area brings on anxious discomfort for me. 

In Switzerland though, the art of foraging for sticks and building a fire under a blanket of trees in the midst of your afternoon walk is highly encouraged and practiced. 

As for teaching your budding piro-happy toddler about safe fire practices. Here's a few tips from a Swiss pro;

Begin with a walk.

Begin with a walk.

  1. Begin with a walk in the woods. It's important to build your hunger while searching for the perfect place for a fire.

Prepare your space.

Prepare your space.

2. prepare space

Stick collection

Stick collection

3. Collecting sticks

teepee

teepee

4. Create a teepee

light

light

5. Light

tend.

tend.

6. Tend the flame

stick collection matinence

stick collection matinence

7. stick collection round 2

the wurst placement

the wurst placement

8. Wust placement

cook, hovering over flame until blistered

cook, hovering over flame until blistered

9. cook and eat

walk home

walk home

10. Clean up your fire and walk home