Thursday, November 17, 2016

Digging in the dirt and ignorance

There are times fate allows ignorance to win.  When I first had the urge to build a house I found a 'shack' for sale on a small lot, cheap. I bought it. Grandson Corey and I went over to the shack and started tearing it down.  He found a small plastic bell he liked and took it home. I told him what we were doing was a secret and he could not tell anyone where he got the bell.

(Corey with George, my partner.  Everyone loved George, he was with me over 20 years)
Sherry asked him that evening about the bell and he said, "It is a secret grandma and I can't tell anyone, and he didn't."  Of course Sherry learned about the shack and lot in a few weeks.

Ignorance. I didn't know I needed a permit to raze a house. The city let me slide after it was down. I learned my first lesson, given me by the city planner. "Mr. Darnell, I guess you were using the theory, 'It is easier to get forgiveness than permission.'  We didn't care about the shack anyway, since it had no electricity."

I didn't tell him I had never heard that statement before, but it has come in handy many times since. LOL.

When I applied for a permit to build a house, using a sketch, the city planner hemmed and hawed. Saying the lot was too small to build on, (I had no idea there was a requirement for lot size to build) but smiled and signed off on a permit.

Using a garden tiller, pick and shovel I dug my first foundation footer. The NC red dirt (clay) is tough to dig in but my first inspection was that footer. The inspector was amazed and said, "NO ONE digs a footer by hand anymore.."

That little house was the beginning of my love for building.

I said that to say this.  Today I have 'enjoyed digging in the dirt'. WOW, Florida is so easy you do not need a pick, mattock or hoe, just shovels.  Today I extended a sewer line 12 feet in an hour and a half.  Then dug  post holes for a privacy fence. I am not kidding, I dug holes 2 feet deep in less than 2 minutes with a posthole digger.  It was so easy it was almost a sin.  I love this soft dirt. (That feeling changes when it comes to areas close to bushes and trees. the roots run nearly on top of the ground.)

Nite Shipslog
Cadillac Seville
Junior my brother stopped by our house once in one of these he had just bought. I said, "The pottery business must be booming."

He said, "Jackie, I charged it."

(Most of you know the term Charged it, is the same as financing it. Of course I knew he was kidding, he believed in debt free living)


Lisa said...

This was a fun read. I know about the NC clay. When I was small I was always digging something. I knew how to jump on the shovel to get it deep into the ground. My friends thought I was a good hole digger. That ended when I sliced my knee on a shovel when my foot slipped off into a deep part of the hole. Are you ready for this?....... I was trying to bury my swing set. Hahaha.

Good nite

betty said...

I have a good friend in Montana that got through her teen years with the thought it was better to ask for forgiveness than permission. Now a mother of 5, I wonder if she will "fall" for that line :)

That seemed like productive work today. Are you worried about sink holes?


Paula said...

Now you'll be digging all time, won't you? Reminds me of when my ex-son-in-law thought he was going to build a privacy fence on the north side of San Antonio in rocky ground. He ruined Melvin's post hole digger and had to hire someone to build the fence.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

Here I thought you were done, but sounds like more had to be finished up. Glad you had it a bit easier digging. I imagine there is lots of sand in your dirt. Looks to be a beauty of a day here. Hope you both enjoy a great day too!

Dar said...

Digging a hole in our terrain is a chore....lotsa rock. Every year Bill gets busy prepping the 1/2 acre garden and every year we grow more rock that has to be moved first, thanks in part to springtime frost heave. At the cabin, digging a hole is easy-peasy til ya hit roots from all the trees. Things are really coming along down there. Your first house built, is a gem.
Snow's coming by morning in our great north woods. Love n'Hugs

Mevely317 said...

That pix of Corey never fails to make me smile!

We've an irrigation leak somewhere(?) in the back yard that has Tom's wits on end. The pups desperately want to 'help' dig; they think it's a big old game. I'll be SO glad when we get rid of this place!

Rick Watson said...

You know what Imsay Jack- Every day's a school day. I'll add- when you stop learning you start dying.