Stopped for Michigan

Our daughter is moving to Michigan and her apartment lease is ending today, so her clothing, kitchen stuff and furniture was, yesterday, moved into storage unit. The space that I reclaimed with the shelves I built is now fully occupied. When one opens the “garage door” to the storage unit, it is as full as practical. I suppose one could get a few socks or paper towel rolls in the unit, but that’s about it.

Until her stuff is moved out, in another 10 days, I’m not able to move stuff into storage, so that part of our move plans are stopped.

In the meantime, I have been working on the lawn. To me, a lawn is a waste of water and I’d just as soon not have the lawn, but…it’s there…and my wife likes it. 🙂 I have a de-thatching rake and I’ve removed quite a lot of thatch from the lawn. That project is stopped at about 2/3 complete until tomorrow morning when the city trash truck empties the now full trash barrel.

Once the thatch removal is complete, I’ll spread fertilizer on the lawn and soon the lawn will look like something that belongs “back east” rather than in the USA desert southwest.

Once the lawn is done, I’m not sure what else I can do, so I’ll probably work on the old truck. I have the parts and, since I have the time, I might as well take care of this stuff now.

An Odd Kind of Excitement

After fixing the lawn sprinkler system, I decided the areas of the yard that had the orange-red-mauve color gravel were looking a bit “old”.

What had happened was that 20 years of desert dust had settled into the gravel and made it look like there were a lot of bare spots in the gravel.

So, I went to the hardware store and got some stuff called hardware cloth. It’s a wire screen with 1/2 inch/1cm square holes. It looks like a window screen for huge flies.

I rake the soil laden gravel into a pile and also remove enough dirt so that the soil level is well below the edge of the sidewalk. I then use the hardware cloth to sift the gravel out of the dirt. The gravel goes back into place and the dirt will be going to a friends house to fill in some holes in their yard.

It’s a very dusty job (one that will last most of a week) and I am using one of my real N95 masks to save me from breathing the dust–I don’t want to sneeze dirt clods! My daughter’s expression for this is “Ewww!!”

Well, someone driving by saw me wearing the N95 mask and actually stopped to complain. “That’s a medical mask. Why are you using a medical mask? You aren’t supposed to use those. They’re supposed to be saved for doctors and nurses.”

“Oh. A special agent of the mask enforcement bureau. Good morning. How may I be of service?” They suggested that I should go engage in lewd acts with myself and drove off. I think they were actually a special agent in charge or, possibly, the director and they were offended that I didn’t use the correct form of address.

Giving the special agent the respect they deserved was not the cause of my excitement. Far from it. The actual cause of my excitement was sewer pipe cleanouts. I’ve been looking for them for nearly 20 years and today I found them. They were buried under several layers of dirt and gravel

It certainly is an odd thing to get excited about.