Making Progress

IMG_1631The water is back on for the season. A few feet of ¾-inch PVC and a bunch of couplers and elbows and reducers and shut-off valves later and the well house has a new (mostly) set of pipes. The old set probably dated to my father’s time. I could imagine him making all of those connections so long ago. Some of the shut-off valves to the various lines were frozen and so it was easier to just replace the whole set-up. With water restored, a small garden is going in between the two houses. Asparagus has been planted and there will be be tomatoes, carrots, and more. The water work was not without complications, however. The original piping is very fragile. As carefully as I worked in connecting the new to the old, I managed to crack the very ancient iron pipe that leads from the well house to what was my grandpa’s house (and which will become a rental if we can get it fixed up). The aformentioned iron pipe in the well house was extremely pitted from exposure to the dampness in the wellhouse for seventy years. And sure enough, under the slightest bit of pressure, it cracked before I was done. It was almost paper-thin in places, an accident waiting to happen. So the water has to remain shut off to that line until we can get a trencherperson out to dig a new line. It won’t be a huge job, but it will take some time. The line to the farmhouse itself is also shut off because there’s a leak under the porch. That means crawling through a two-foot high (at most) crawl space to fix it. I’m afraid to even look at it. If the break is on galvanized pipe then it could be difficult to repair. If it’s PVC it’ll be much easier. So the only usable water line now is to the outside hydrants. I’ll take that small success and work on the other later. There was a light rain during this last trip and it was good to see that the gutters Paul and I put up a month ago are doing their job. Water was flowing down the downspouts and away from the foundation. Only two of our gutter corners were leaking and those can be patched with cement later. I got up on the barn roof and nailed down a piece of tin that was flapping in the south wind. I also assessed repairs that I need to make to the soffit before I can replace two missing sheets of tin roofing. Wind and water are a barn’s enemies. I don’t propose to let them win. I added two more birds to my farm list. One was a bluebird. I’d never seen bluebirds on the farm in my growing up years, but I’d never known to look for them either. There was also a mockingbird carrying on down by the pasture in that way that mockingbirds carry on in the spring. We made two more improvements this trip. Using a Bobcat we lifted about a dozen fencepost stubs out of the ground from the former cattle pens. The posts had been torched off by iron salvagers, leaving jagged tips that could rip up a tractor tire. Each post had several hundred pounds of concrete clinging to it. These people must have thought they were going to raise buffalo. I can only imagine the money they put into fencing. I also took a chain saw and cut down several fairly large elm trees that had come up volunteer in the road ditch in the last 20 years. This would have been a lot easier to do when they were sprouts, rather than waiting till they were full grown. But now it’s done. We also picked up a lot more junk this week. Every trip across the farmstead turns up something else to be picked up––a piece of plastic or metal. The piles of both are growing. I feel better. Progress has been made

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One Response to Making Progress

  1. gooseknoll says:

    Wow.  I can’t imagine wh

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