Tragic Septic

Agh! I thought the moles and gophers were bad. Now we have 5 foot deep, 6 foot long holes in our newly levelled and seeded lawn. This is not the way I intended to give a preview of our new landscaping! In the foreground is where a break in the pipe had developed into a complete blockage that Richard located (surprisingly accurately, thank goodness) with the help of a septic company with a camera this afternoon. Just visible at the back in the wider last image is the series of trenches that he and Jonathan dug yesterday, looking for the ‘T’ where this long pipe from the tanks beneath our dining room window meets the field itself, right at the back fence. Tomorrow Richard will repair the pipe close to the house, and mark the spot for the next hole, which luckily we can deal with later. If all goes well with the repair, we might get away as planned for the long weekend. And then come back to lawn patching and re-levelling and re-seeding….


We were tired going into this weekend, sick of early morning watering sessions and dealing with monster weeds, roasted by the sun or soaked by erratic torrential downpours and eaten alive by bugs, straining backs and shoulders hauling rocks and putting our fence back up, exhausted by the huge number of tasks ahead of us with our August long weekend event as the deadline for getting it all done…. People think we’re crazy. But, as Richard just pointed out, we chose to do it. We want to do it because we want a gorgeous yard. What we didn’t plan to do, and thought we’d prevented when we dealt with similar problems 3 years ago, is to dig up our septic field. We certainly didn’t want to be doing this just after we levelled the entire area with new soil and seeded it with very expensive grass! And now, neighbour Jonathan in his backhoe is on trench number three in that nice new lawn, to the depth of Richard’s waist. The septic has been pumped out and the blockage or break traced to the field out back, so that’s somewhat of a relief. Yesterday when the drains in the basement backed up (after 3 loads of laundry), our first fearful thought was that the depth we dug out of the hillside beside the house, followed by heavy equipment and fully loaded dumptrucks driving over it, had cracked the pipe that leads from the tanks to the field at the point closest to the house. I’ve been babying that area along for two months, trying to combat the weeds in the cheap topsoil. We even re-seeded two weeks ago to fill it in more. So it really would have been tragic to drive over that with the backhoe treads and dig holes in it. I’d be crying right now. As it is, we’re both kind of in shock. This can’t be happening!! Even more frustrating than the work (not to mention expense!) that’s gone before this being ruined, is the fact that with only a month until our event, and more importantly, only a week or so until the tanks will be full to overflowing again, Richard feels we cannot go on our annual holiday to visit the Lunds on Marrowstone next weekend. This would be our tenth year in a row. We look forward to it so much because all we do is sit around and relax. It’s really our only vacation most years. I need it so badly – my new boss arrives right after the weekend and my job is going to get 3 times busier and potentially 10 times more stressful, so the timing of this holiday couldn’t have been better. Now I feel sick. And sad. I hope they find the ‘T’ in the field and the blockage quickly and don’t have to dig the whole damn field up and replace it. I don’t want to know what just having the septic guy here for over 6 … Continue Reading →