08 January 2010

There will be water.

Every day I live out here in the country in our new house, I expand my perspective on the world in new and unexpected ways. For example, I now know there are several very different ways you can think of your basement.

One way, with a properly finished basement, is as an extra living space, with all the amenities of the above-ground floors.

Another way, with a standard basement, is as a place to store things you want out of the way, or a place to house your tool collection where everybody else won't get their grubby hands all over it.

A third way, with my basement, is as a handy container to hold massive amounts of water, one that should be measured cubically for volume rather than by square footage when assessing its value as part of the house.

I'll spare you the details of my theories on hows and whys, but I'll just say that until you've seen streams of bubbles emerging from cracks in your floor, as the already pretty sodden Earth readily drinks up the surprising source of refreshment that is your basement, you can't truly appreciate the ability to nurture that space as a precious aquatic environment on an otherwise inhospitable frozen prairie.

Also, a situation like this allows you to learn the gallon capacity of your super-sweet new snow snovel. (Plus, what else would fully clean off all the clay from shoveling out the leftover pile of dirt from the previous owner's hasty sump-pump installation?)

Like so many things in life, this (hopefully temporary) stressful and somewhat frustrating situation has a bright side-- I've learned so much about sump pump specifications, the intricacies of water softening and iron removal systems, and the effects of a loosely filled old well pit having recently unfrozen sump discharge lines emptying right on top of it.

And of course, living out here in what's effectively the nicest cabin ever built, nature's always here to teach me something, too. Like that high winds carrying loose snow always seek the best-shoveled path. And that quaint as all the bunny tracks around the constantly replenished source of fresh, salty water may be, eventually that thing making the larger prints every morning will manage to find itself something to eat one day when it comes for its own warm drink.

And that meal will be sure to evacuate its every orifice before shuffling off this mortal coil, all across the view from your breakfast table.

Just breathe deep of that fresh country air, my friends. Ahhhh...


LiteralDan said...

Happy New Year, everyone!

It's been even more nuts around here the past month than the previous few months, but thanks for waiting so long for a post!

As I sort everything out and build a better routine (up for the bus in the 5-below pitch black of 6:30am-- yay!), I promise I'll post much more often.

Jenny Grace said...

Post is excellent though. Maybe you need a pet dolphin. Or a manta ray.

Kim said...

After my parents' basement flooded, they had someone install a "water alarm" that goes off if moisture is detected by the sensor. The only problem? The sensor was installed an inch off the floor. Nice.

Russ said...

Indoor pool!!!

Missed ya Dan.

Andrea's Sweet Life said...

It's always funny when the newbies move out to the country (to us, not to them). Welcome to country life! Enjoy!!

Dawn said...

I have a 3rd grade student this year that is OBSESSESED with sump pumps...maybe I should send him your direction. LOL

Good to see you back!

Mary said...

Sounds like you need to watch episodes of the old Green Acres show.