Monday, March 10, 2008

Ditch. Diggin'.



So in addition to karate kamp, I have a new reason for muscle soreness today.

Kathy and I spent part of the weekend digging a ditch.

Or rather, not digging, but digging out.

Along one side of our property runs an irrigation ditch. We get precious little use out of it, since due to the brilliant engineers who subdivided our area, our property is actually higher than the water level in the ditch. Despite the ditch's general uselessness, we are obliged to maintain it.

Every spring we go out and burn the weeds that have grown up around the ditch, and do various other bits of maintenance. Because the ditch has a tendency to silt up over time, it also has to be dug out every few years.
I let this job slide too long. I had reasons: hospital visits followed by overlong recoveries, deadline pressure, and a desire to, now and again, have fun.
So Saturday morning we set to work. It went well and quickly until we encountered the part of the ditch that had been infiltrated by tree roots. After some trial and error, we developed a successful method.
Kathy would back down the ditch ahead of me, hammering with a pick to break up the sediment and chop up the roots. I would follow with a shovel, lifting out the result. (It was easier for Kathy to use the pick than to heave up a shovel full of dirt.)
After Kathy tuckered out, I used pick and shovel solo till the sun got high and I decided enough was enough. By which time Kathy had visited our local Burritos Alinstante and had a tasty and healthful meal waiting for me.
After doing this Saturday and Sunday, I now have a whole new set of screaming muscles. And so does Kathy.
About a quarter of the ditch remains. Having got the method down by now, I'll be doing the job on the next available weekday morning, while Kathy is resting her muscles at work.
After which, I'll make a run for the Tiger Balm.

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2 Comments:

Blogger halojones-fan said...

"And today, children, we learn WHY the First World is so much more productive than the Third World."

5:31 PM  
Anonymous Monica Byrne said...

Tiger Balm!

When I was in seventh grade I brought a jar of that stuff into school. For a day, I was definitely the most popular kid around.

10:41 AM  

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