6 Nov 2016

The weekend goal was more sanding but to be honest, I’m a bit “sanded out” and was looking for something else to do. A big yard project that’s been brewing for several years has my attention. After 23 years, the pond liner’s degraded, the deck was full of termites and dry rot, the shading’s already partially collapsed due to the same, and the filter housing is tipping due to apparently collapsing gopher tunnels.

The plan was to fill in the pond and replace it with a vegetable garden, but as these thing seem to go with me, the project took on a life of its own. The plan is to dig out part of the rear bank for an above ground pond, albeit a smaller one. The advantage to above ground is that nitrate-rich pond water can be gravity drained into the vegetable beds “for free.” Actually it’s the other way around: the vegetables get water regardless and having it come from the pond makes the pond effectively “free” in terms of water usage. Above ground also means a gravity-fed filter will be much easier to implement and much of the equipment is already on-hand so the outlay wouldn’t be too much. The first pictures shows the whole mess – there’s a lot to do. The second picture shows the area where the new pond will go; the back edge of the dig has already run into the excuse for soil we have around here, clay/sandstone, which can be hard as hell. A jackhammer will be needed to break it up and speaking of work, there’ll be plenty: building a retaining wall for the bank and extending it around the front of the pond. Then there’s moving all that dirt out of the way in preparation of filling the old pond; at least this is happening in the cooler months. In parallel I’ve been looking at the latest filter technology and while it’s advanced in terms of media and equipment, the underlying pricipals remain unchanged.

All was not lost car-wise though. After the yard work I took the car out then visited mom. It was a chance to take some pictures of our two cars side by side, my brother noting how the wheelbase on my car is about 3″ longer than the Stalker, and the front track is a lot wider. Oh, and on the way home while passing through the rich part of town I saw a Mercedes-Benz SLR Mclaren Coupe (~$450,ooo when new). I’ll admit a bit of concern about possibly pulling up alongside it but the guy turned off. We might have had similar acceleration but I’d lose to his much faster shifting gearbox, never mind breaking a bunch of laws in mere seconds ;).