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Plotting the Pond
2008-07-09, 5:15 p.m.

Day 1417

So it’s getting to be time to start thinking about moving our little fish pond. Of course, the next one will have to be bigger. It’s the way of the American male. We’re trying to find out what size liners are available from our local gardening store. I’m hoping that 24 foot widths are available. That will let me make a pond about 18 feet wide by however long I’d care to go. The limit will be How much of this epdm crap I can tote. Might have to get inventive like Sport and put sleds, tractors and trucks to good use.

There are a few things I don’t care for in our current ponds set up.

1) The filter bucket/waterfalls is not camouflaged at all. Makes a nice noise, but sticks out like a sore thumb.
2) The brick’s lining the edge of the pond. Looks like a half hearted attempt at doing something formal, where I’d really prefer the more natural look.
3) The profile of the ponds depth. There is a shelf, maybe 12 inches deep, 15 or so inches wide all around the perimeter. Makes for easy placement of lilies, rushes, iris and Jerome – our version of the little peeing Belgian boy. Beyond the shelf, the bottom just drops off to about a 3 foot depth – sort of the de facto minimum around here if you want your fishies to survive the winter. We definitely would like the little things to survive, but a more gradual depth change would be nice. And still provide “shelves” for plant placement.

So those are the thing I’d like to correct or improve upon. The edge transition will require some rock hunting. Lots & lots of rocks. Could buy them, but have you ever shopped for rocks? They cost a lot more than you’d think. Must be all the handling required because raw material wise it doesn’t get much simpler.

Fixing the waterfalls will be a fun challenge. Besides saving some of the diggings to fill in the old pond (Which will be under the deck, so why fill it, really?) I’ll be using some to build up a bit of a stream bed. I’ll move the filter bucket off to the top of the heap o’dirt, line the stream bed with the old pond liner and get inventive with more rocks. We have lots of slate chunks from an earlier, aborted attempt at getting artsy. I have a feeling those will be getting re-employed.

Fixing the profile of the bottom may be a little more challenging. I mentioned before that we live on what must have been beach front property towards the end of the last glaciation period. Sand doesn’t hold form so well. But if the slopes are gentle, maybe it won’t be too difficult to figure out how to create shelving without it collapsing every time I accidentally bump into it. And did I mention 3 feet deep? Might want to try for 3.5. Maybe then it will be tempting to laze around in on days like yesterday when it hit a freakin hundred degree here! I saw 99 in my van, but Eric said his car thermo read 104 at one point. Really, really hot for these parts. You Texans can just shuddup or I’ll send you a foot of snow for Christmas. And New Years, Valentines Day, Presidents Day AND Easter. Maybe Mothers day too. (Yes we got a foot of snow on Mothers Day once. Bizarre.)
So yeah, it was hot here yesterday. I had a dentist appointment across town from my place of workship and actually saw 99 degrees show up on my van’s thermometer as I cut across the city. Dentist visit? Not fun. Just a routing cleaning, but got a new hygienist. Brutal. Plus she has this annoying speaking habit of extending the last syllable she speaks while she tilts her head and smiles like some fakey cheerleader. Drove me nucking futz. But I will say that my teeth feel really, really clean. Perhaps some of her brutishness was because I’m not the best at being good about flossing regularly. With the threat of more of her ‘gentle dentistry’ I think I can pick up the slack on flossing. Talk about motivation!

I was just getting ready to head out to my Al Anon meeting last night when we got a call from my FIL’s place. It was the aide that is assigned to give him his medicine. Couldn’t get his medicine lock box open again. Really, really bad timing. Off I went, 10 miles in the wrong direction, just to make sure The Bob got his evening dose of wonder drugs. These are important too – at least the seroquel is. Supposed to keep him from getting all agitated. Just upped him from 25 to 50 (mg, ug, some gram unit) because the 25 CLEARLY wasn’t doing it. Unfortunately, it took involving the social services nurse at The Bob’s swinging bachelor pad before the doc would ok upping the dosage. It’s frustrating because the doctors are very patronizing when you comment to them about your parents symptoms. They really seem like they’re poo-pooing everything we tell them like it’s all classic “child of an Alzheimer’s patient” complaints and we’re just over reacting to minor little disturbances. Well. Fucker. Why is it when Nurse Carol lists the same symptoms we’ve been telling you for months it’s all of a sudden “real”.

Yeah. So. Better make sure he gets the seroquel before he tears the place apart. So I get over to the swinging bachelor pad, fiddle fart around with the &^%#$ box for about 10 minutes and coax it to open. Showed the aides what little magic tricks I used to open it. Bob got his “be good now” pills, I picked up yet another dresser drawer that he smashed in a fit of rage (I have 3 glued up now – it’s getting to be epidemic here) (can I add hurry up with the damn seroquel increases please?) and left for home just as my meeting should have been starting. Sweet.

Since it’s cooler here today (like only hi 70’s vs. 100 or so yesterday) and we’re not sticking to everything or sweating just from the effort of breathing, Cindy will be repaying me for my inconveniences in the name of her dad. Believe me, I’d MUCH rather Cindy pay that debt. I’m thinking something along the lines of a *ahem* “service in trade” if’n you know what I mean. Cindy will get hers too though. A gentleman should never leave a lady hanging, you won’t get invited back. It’s just the methodology I think we ought to employ that’s a special request. All in the name of fun. And aerobics. And maybe a cool shower afterwards.

Aaaannnnyhow. Remind me to get a loaf of nice Italian bread, bread crumbs and shaving gel on the way home tonight, wouldja? Two of them I need for dinner, and the third, well, you figure it out. What’s for dinner? Chicken Parmesan (made from scratch, cuz it’s good like that), spaghetti squash and/or pasta of choice, Diavolo sauce (bought, not made ) and good old tossed salad. Oohh – better get some Lite Caesar dressing too. And maybe get a nice roasted Garlic Batard instead of a simple Italian Bread. Anything to avoid boredom with food. Then. THEN!! I might get Cindy to go out on a little bike ride tonight. It may be only a couple of miles around the ‘hood, and certainly not very fast, but it’s at least out on a bike. A recently brought back to life bike at that. She subtly dropped hints that she’d be willing to give it a whack, IF her bike were in working order. So I working ordered it. New tubes & tires, a little rim aligning, give the brakes a once over. I even test rode it. Looked like a circus clown, but at least I knew it worked. I’ll just have to make sure that when (not if) we go riding I don’t leave her in the dust.

Oowee – lookit the time. I’d better post & run.

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old habits - new tricks