First, obligatory cat picture!
I think I spotted about 8 or 10 cats in total this morning; they move around so much, it’s hard to tell some of them apart. 😀
I did the walk to check on the washed out road to the south of us again, and things are much improved.
This deeper section is now about half as wide as it was before. The other section that was much wider but shallower is also substantially reduced.
While walking back, I saw something that made me very happy. A grader went by on the main road!
So of course, I had to check that washout, too.
Click on the images to see them in a larger size.
The patch job is holding out, and with the water receding, it shouldn’t get any bigger – hopefully! My goodness, though, that’s a lot of gravel that washed into our side of the fence line! In the middle picture, the grader is still visible, but it’s hard to see with the trees in the background.
I’d gone though our back gate to check this area out, and as I headed back through the outer yard, I saw a gravel truck going by. I know there are a lot more washouts to the west of us. The company we bought our garden soil from mostly works with gravel, as well as doing driveways, road repairs, etc. Once I got inside, I sent an email to the renter, who also happens to be on our municipal council, to thank them for doing such a great job dealing with all this. Then I sent a direct message to his wife to pass on that I’d sent the email to check at his leisure. I knew he would be incredibly busy. I was right! His wife told me he was out hauling. Their own farm came very close to major damage, but the water started to recede just in time. She also told me the gravel company has been working tirelessly, cleaning things up. So I made sure to pass on thanks to them, too! I’m sure the council has been hearing plenty of complaints, so I wanted to make sure to pass on some appreciation. There’s only so much they can do until the water recedes, and I totally understand how frustrated they must have been.
One thing about this time of year, is that I can actually see the state of the outer yard in some places.
This is in the part of the outer yard that leads to the back gate. Those tire tracks have been here longer than we have. I’ve put that stick there so that, when I’m trying to mow a lane to the back gate, I can see where it gets particularly rough. The whole section is full of ruts that there’s just no avoiding.
I wonder if this year, we’ll finally manage to do a controlled burn? The whole area is such a fire hazard in the summer, with all that thatch, a controlled burn would make is much safer – but with old buildings and sheds in the area, there’s a risk of one of them catching fire. With so much moisture this spring, it would be easier to control a burn.
When it comes to the risk, it’s 6 of one, and a half dozen of the other.
After finishing my rounds, I called the appliance repair guy that did the warranty work on our washing machine before. I was able to explain and describe what happened. He confirmed that the machine turning itself on and draining is a fail safe. With the drain still not tested properly – and I really don’t know how to test it without the washing machine, since it sends the most water through, under pressure, than anything else – what should have been a good thing is now a problem.
There is no way he can come out here for at least a week, so he described what to try first. We’ll have to pop the back panel off to do it. There is an air hose that goes from the electronics panel to under the tub; with the water sitting in the tub overnight, it may have gotten clogged. We’ll need to detach it from the top and try blowing through it. If it’s not clogged, he wants us to do a test wash. After putting the air hose back, of course, we need to run an empty load. With nothing in the tub, the water level should reach only about 5 inches deep. If it keeps on filling without stopping, we would need to shut it off, unplug it again, and call him back. Otherwise, if it starts working as it should and goes through a wash cycle, that may do a reset on the electronics (we had to do this when we first bought the machine), and that should solve any weird issues, there.
To do this, we’ll have to first pull the dryer out, so we can access the back of the washing machine.
The dryer duct needs to be replaced, as we found out the cats had damaged it, the last time we had to get back there. When my daughter put my super wet laundry into the dryer after she foot stomp washed it for me, the glass in the entire house fogged up! Going into the dining room and kitchen areas was like being in a sauna.
Which was actually really pleasant, and I’m sure the plants loves it, but not good for the house! 😀
Since the grader went by, I decided to make the trip into town.
I actually passed the grader, working the other half of the road, on the way out. 🙂
Then I reached the washout.
Please excuse my terrible picture. I just stopped, stuck my phone out the window, and shot blind.
Right in front of me is where the municipal drainage ditch runs under the road. The area I noted earlier as looking like it would flood, is indeed washed out, and it extends almost as far as where the culvert is.
Knowing the grader went through here already, I wasn’t too worried about being able to cross it in our tender van. 😉
The next area of concern was there the gravel road reached the highway. I knew it had been washed out badly, but this is a major intersection (as for as out rural municipality goes!) and I knew it would have been a priority fix. Sure enough, it was completely redone with fresh gravel, though the driveways to the nearby church, and into a private residence (thankfully, no one lives there right now) are badly damaged and under fast running water.
In fact, the whole way to town, the ditch on that side was a fast flowing little river. This ditch is a main drain straight to the lake and, from the looks of it, the two municipalities it crosses had managed to clear the snow out – again – to keep the water flowing. There’s just so much of it, even the driveways and roads that didn’t get washed out, still had all the gravel around the culverts washed away, exposing the rock foundations.
Town itself was all right, in the places I needed to get to. I know in other areas, there are major problems.
My first stop was the hardware store. This is a small store, and their major appliances are in the basement. I don’t normally go down there, so I made a point of looking around while there. I found the dryer duct I needed, and also picked up vent filters. With so much cat hair floating around, I knew this was something we needed, but hadn’t actually found any until today. One pack has 24 filters in them.
I got two.
While I was at it, I also picked up more of the drain maintenance stuff that uses bacteria and enzymes to help keep the plumping clean. I also got a product that’s a fast clog clearer – not something I got before, because it’s strong enough that the bottles are sold in their own plastic bags, to avoid any risk if there’s a spill. We’ll have to be very careful using it. It may not be designed specifically as septic safe, but with so much water flowing into our septic tank and the pump going off so often right now, I’m not too worried about that right now. Then, once that’s done, we can use the other stuff to get the bacteria and enzymes established again.
Since I was in town anyhow, I made a quick stop at the grocery store for a few small things, then remembered to stop at the store we found those storage bins that have been so handy for our seed starts. Happily, they restocked on the larger bins, so I got 4 more. I also found some plant clips and picked up some new wooden clothes pins. The ones we have now are really old and starting to fall apart. There are plastic ones, too, but they’re so old, many of them have become brittle and snap when we try to use them.
I forgot to look for clothes line at the hardware store, but that’s okay. We should probably measure how much we need, first, to replace the broken clothesline. I might pick up some more pullies, too. When my dad set up the posts for the clothes line, he made it to hold three of them. Back then, we were using a wringer washer, and had no clothes dryer. There’s just one clothes line, now. The posts are starting to lean inwards, though, so we’ll have to do something to correct that. I’d like to have the option of hanging clothes outside, if we want or need to.
We now have what we need for when we get behind the washer and dryer. I don’t know that we’ll get to that today, though. We need to set up the sun room so we can bring in more plants.
Which I’ll be talking about in my next post. The plants, I mean, not the sun room. I’m so excited!