Tuesday, 2 February 2016

george's pond?

 Some jobs just sail along.

Others don't. This one hasn't.

We're creating a large pond for wildlife utilising the rainwater collected from the roofs of our two homes. 20m wide, this will be a haven for wild plants and animals and, we hope, be a jewel in the Cordwood crown.
the matting goes in with spoil on top

some of our disgruntled frogs
I've bored anyone I can back into a corner with gems I've gleaned from reading 'The Pond Book' published by the Freshwater Habitats trust.

We dredged out the water and its hoard of disgruntled frogs only to find the following day that the pond had refilled - the water table is so high after this wet 'winter' that even on the top of the hill the water isn't far from the surface. So, back in goes some of the excavated material to bring us above the water table.

Now, we've tweaked the levels and are in the final stages of lining the pond-to-be with a membrane impregnated with sodium bentonite that expands when in contact with water creating what we hope will be an impermeable barrier. A thick layer of the 'spoil' previously removed by Mark is added on top of the matting in which pond plants will eventually  thrive.

So, diggers and dumpers delivered. Bento-matting off loaded. We're ready.

a tea break for the team
Then calamity of calamities, my poor old dad who'd been helping drag the heavy matting (just what your typical 87 year old does for fun!) trips and breaks and dislocates his right shoulder, breaks his left patella and gashes his head as he and mum go for a warm. God bless our National Health Service. The ambulance arrived in minutes, the staff in Queens Medical Centre (QMC) Accident and Emergency were saintlike to a man and woman, as have been the wonderful people who run the QMC Major Trauma unit. Down with those naysayers who malign or undermine the national treasure that is Britain's health service! Thank you hardly seems sufficient.

So back to work, and dang! There's poor old Judith back to the same A&E but this time with Roger requiring 9 stitches for a nasty cut with a Stanley knife. And in the hurry taking the dumper keys with them.

We'll carry on. Let's get the mini-digger into the pond to track in and level the spoil. What's that? Hmmm, a hyrdaulic fluid leak.  No mini-digger.

So that's just about left the 3 tonne digger. 

But you  know people, we just keep on keepin' on.

And sometimes, from adversity comes inspiration. I read that our forebears made sacrifices to bestow blessings on new ships or prestigious ventures. Thinking of my poor old dad in his hospital bed, I wondered if this pond should carry our progenitors name? 'George's Pond'. Gotta ring.

And where would we be without our friends?? Stars in our firmament AGAIN have been Linda and Trev who have worked until they creaked. And Bob. Bless him. And Jim and the boys. And Ally and Simon. And Christian. And the missus drags herself on, still suffering from the cold she brought back from Germany in the summer and thoroughly worn down.

The digger technician arrives in about two hours and then we can start again.

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