Our septic tank required attention this past week*, which involved Younger Son digging up part of my flower bed to find the pump-out access hatch. Which should have been no more than 6" underground but which turned out to be much, much deeper. Ser Percival The Energetic was a big help, as you can see.
::hours passed, YS dug and dug::
That big round thing under the shovel is the access cover.
This gives you a better perspective. Everything between us and the tree is/was garden. Manhole by tree gives access to the pump and electrical workings.
YS felt badly about having to destroy some plants. I told him plants are like children; you can always have another one.
He was not impressed.
The pump-out access cover was 31" underground. The installation diagram filed with the county when it was installed said that it should be no more than 6" underground. Oops.
* The gory details, which you may skip if you want. There is not enough room at the same elevation as the house to put in a drain field**, so it was put at the top of the hill behind the house. Septic tank has two chambers. The drains from the house go into the first, the *settling* chamber; when the liquid reaches a certain level it drains into the second, the *liquid* chamber, where a pump pushes that liquid up the hill.
** Original drain field was actually on neighbor's property. We decided that was not a good thing and so had the new one put in.
First. This happened a friend who was traveling home from Chicago last week. It was sent as a letter to the editor of a number of newspapers throughout our congressional district.
Dear [incumbent candidate],
You owe an apology to 40 or more people you stiffed while boarding United flight 3650 from Chicago to Minneapolis on Tuesday, October 14, 2014. After we passengers waited patiently an extra hour for a mechanical repair, you and your companion brazenly cut through the waiting crowd to board out of turn. When the agent politely insisted that you wait for your group, you displayed a temper tantrum, as a clearly embarreassed companion retreated back to the crowd. Finally, you completely intimidated the agent and boarded. She seemed to give in to your bullying and the fact that you were delaying the rest of us from boarding. At first I thought that you might have some important business to attend to, but when I passed your seat you were busy playing solitaire on your tablet.
It is not often that we get a window in the true personality of our elected officials, but this incident spoke volumes about who [you]* really [are]. Your self-centered arrogance matches with your complaint that $174,000 a year is an insufficient salary. It illustrates why you have nothing in common with the Wisconsin citizens you serve. Why should you worry about common people like the people you were elected to represent? The money interests you cater to support you, and for you that's what counts. I can understand why it is said about you: "There's less to him than meets the eye."
Second. This was related to me by a colleague who placed an ad in all the local newspapers to run the week before the election.
"The woman behnd the counter finished filling out the paperwork for the ad and said to me, 'Okay, that will run in the November 5th edition.'
"I looked at her in amazement and replied, 'The election is November 4th!'
"She gave me a completely blank look. I don't hink I have ever seen anyone look as clueless as she did at that moment.
" 'What election?' "
I don't know about where you live, but our TV stations have been wall-to-wall political ads since Labor Day, and the roadsides bristle with candidate signs, also with ones that say, Vote November 4. How could someone not know there was an election coming up?
Usually when I encounter someone as oblivious or dumb as this, I think to myself, "...and then they voted."
Clearly, I do not have to worry about that with this woman.
* I have mentioned many times where I live. You can easily figure out who this incumbent candidate is.
Ten Things I Would Save If My House Were On Fire, Assuming The People And Pets Were Safe.
My Mac Mini.
My external hard drive.
The two boxes of photos in my office.
Ipad and iPhone. The latter is always in my pocket unless I am sleeping, so that is is easy.
After that, it becomes a matter of how big the fire is. The rest of the list is other things I might try to save if I could do so without endangering myself. I would probably pitch these out a window or off the deck as far as I could throw them.
Tax files from the past few years.
Yarn stash. Yes, I would save my tax files before my stash. I was an accountant, you know.
Current knitting projects.
Winter coat, boots, scarf, etc. Assuming this hypothetical fire did not occur in July or August.
The safe. It is fireproof so probably not a priority. But it is also small, so why not?
This is really a thought-provoking topic. It makes me think we should all keep a go-bag packed with the things that cannot be replaced easily. Thanks, Carole! You may never know how you helped your readers.
* Years ago I lifted some pavers at the bottom of the deck stair to pull the weeds that were growing between them. Doing so revealed a good-sized ant hill, complete with eggs. All the ants immediately started grabbing the eggs and scurrying underground. The boys were watching and gave voice to the ants' cries: "Save the babies! Save the babies!" and "Dive! Dive!"
So we celebrated. I got out our wedding album, and we and Younger Son looked at the pictures of the day. Then we listened to Billy Idol singing White Wedding while we ate our pancakes and bacon.
In the 20 seconds it took me to get the wedding album, Ser Percy found my yarn.
That's most of two skeins of Shibui Silk Cloud; 60/40 mohair/silk. Have you ever untangled Kid Silk Haze? This is the same, only silkier.
I am making a Multigrain scarf* as a Christmas present for Elder Son's next-door neighbor, who has been such a good friend and helper and welcomer to him in Sioux Falls. (I almost said "elderly neighbor", but then I remembered that she is only a couple years older than I. Oops.)
We cover the entire spectrum of music.
* I just rechecked the pattern. I think I may have only gotten 2 skeins of Pebble instead of 4 as required. Another order going in. Damn.
I talked to a local judge last night at a meeting. She said she had performed the first same-sex marriage in our county that day. It was for two women who had been together roughly forever. Their two kids were at the ceremony. Judge said she had tears of joy running down her face during the entire ceremony. History was made yesterday in Polk County.
As much as I dislike our current governor, I have to give him credit for saying that Wisconsin will follow the law and not block same-sex marriage. And I will not mention that he may be saying that simply because the election is 24 days away and he is in a dead heat with his opponent and, clearly, public sentiment is on the side of allowing adults to marry whomever they chose. No, I will not say that.
I was searching through my iPhoto library for a photo of the mini-mini-motorhome -- found it! -- and came across some others that I felt the need to share. I sincerely hope none of you are still on dial-up because this is one mother of a photo-heavy post.
First, the miscellaneous:
Llama, up close and personal. 2008.
I broke my ankle in September, 2008 when the stock market crashed and the election was heating up. Remember Dolores? I thought she lent just the right touch to my cast.
Convention center hallway, Milwaukee, 2010. Of course I pushed the button.
That trip to South Africa in 2005:
Yes, those are ostriches. They are raised for their meat (apparently).
Charging an iPod in Madrid en route.
Tame cheetah at a wildlife park. Did you know that cheetahs purr? REALLY LOUDLY?! (The young woman was someone else on our tour.)
Smokey used to have a large (4' tall) cage of flying squirrels he had captured in our attic. This is Codger, so named because he seemed the oldest. Peak population in the cage was 7. One pair mated (repeatedly! with enthusiasm! ) and had babies. 2007.
My all-time favorite picture of Smokey. Glacier National Park, 2010.
The photo that prompted this post. The pole light needed a new bulb. This was the only way anyone could reach it. Smokey suggested the arrangement to Younger Son (watching), who started to climb up but came back down, saying, It doesn't feel safe. (What you may not be able to tell from the photo is that Da Yeep is parked on the steepest part of the driveway hill, the place that has stopped many a car from getting up that hill in the winter.) My intrepid husband said, Oh, I can do it. And did. Circa 2009.
More fingerless gloves to sell at the farmer's market.
Believe it or not, these are from the same ball of yarn. I should have alternated from each end of the ball.
Yarn: Plymouth Boku that has been in the stash for so long I no longer have the label. Needle:Knitter's Pride bamboo circ, US#7. Pattern: Pattern? I don' need no steenkin' pattern!* Cuff, 1x1 rib; body, 3x1 rib. Size: 32 st.
There is a matching right glove. Do you know how hard it is to take a photo of both hands at once?