Our accountant friend, Sheldon, found a way to get back some of the money taken from us by Uncle Sam. We decided to share the wealth with our neighbor, Jerry, and his helpers.
They showed up last week during a late spring snow storm with all their toys, err—tools and gear.
Yes, after nearly forty years of dragging hoses we decided to finally step into the Twenty-First Century and have an automatic sprinkler system installed on our property.
The workers spent the morning charting locations for the spray heads.
Footprints in the snow made it easier to map out the project.
They dug a big hole by our water meter and another by the front sidewalk, then took their stuff and left.
The snow had melted by the next morning and Jerry’s guys were back with their trencher and lots of pipe. They hooked one end of the pipe to the blade of the trencher and took off across the lawn.
They were training a rookie and had to give him some lessons on playing out the pipe.
In no time at all the project was under way.
It wasn’t exactly clear as to whether they were putting down pipe or just plowing up the yard.
Or maybe looking for the bodies.
DH told the guys where all the bodies were buried so they could work around them.
Another big hole. This time the guys were filling a box full of valves and gadgets to control the system.
By the afternoon Rookie had a friend digging holes with him.
“Why are you digging a hole?”
“I’m looking for buried treasure.”
“What have you found?”
“A few dirty rocks, a weird root, and some disgusting grubs.”
“On your first try?”
“Yeah! There’s treasure everywhere!”
Quote from Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes
Now our yard was looking like the guys were dealing with a bad gopher infestation. And maybe they were wiring the place with plastic explosives to blow the whole lawn.
“Free to kill gophers at will. To kill, you must know your enemy, and in this case my enemy is a varmint. And a varmint will never quit - ever. They're like the Viet Cong - Varmint Cong. So you have to fall back on superior intelligence and superior firepower. And that's all she wrote.”
Carl Spackler, Caddy Shack
Rookie and his friend went to work in the holes connecting sprinkler heads to the pipe.
“Look! A trickle of water running through some dirt! I’d say our afternoon just got booked solid!”
By the end of the afternoon there were sprinkler heads every place there was a pink flag.
Out front by the water main they were filling up the big hole. In fact they filled up all the holes, packed down the trench ridges, replaced the sod…
…and cleaned up the rubble. They checked things out and went away to wait.
They needed a way to hook up the electricity to run the system so we called another neighbor.
LeRoy and his son, Levi, came by and installed an outlet by the new sprinkler-system control box, so we gave them some of our tax return.
When the system was finally hooked up, the heads popped up out of the lawn like snakes out of a basket and sent a gentle sweep of water to the surrounding grass.
The timer is set to water after midnight which is much more efficient than our old method of randomly running water during the afternoons. We just have to remember all this when the grandkids want to sleep out at night in the yard.