Saturday, 10 September 2011


The weekend didn't quite get off to the start I had hoped for...
Early on, the German Biscuit and the cafe crema was delicious. The jazz reviews in the Guardian were "so-so" this weekend (too many vocalists for my liking), but the Red Garland Trio on my hi-fi were keeping the old spirits up. It was the start of my two days "me time" and I was approaching a state that could almost be called "mellow".
I'd even started a little housework" and then it all went pear-shaped. I noticed the trip switch on the septic tank overflow pump had gone.
A quick change into my cruddiest of cruddy clothes and a trudge to the foot of the garden confirmed my worst fears. I could smell the bloody thing before I was even half way down the garden path.
The hose had become detached from the pump...the chamber had filled ...the switch had become submerged in water and the trip had..well.. it had "tripped".
Job one is to empty the tank (by hand) to get the liquid level below the switch. Well, actually step one is to chap on the neighbours doors and ask them not to run/flush any water till I'm finished. The problem is - where to empty it? Can't put it down the bog as that would only go back into the tank and I'd be there all day!
There's no natural "run off" or we wouldn't need a pump to take it way, and I'm not draining it away in our garden!
I ended up just dumping it on the grass verge at the side of the road. One of my manky hippy neighbours lets his dog roam about there, so with a bit of luck the mangy thing will catch something (that would be natural justice).

"I've dropped my screwdriver?"
 Anyone who has ever fancied living in the country and sharing in the "rural idyll" should be made to put their head down a septic tank for five minutes ... then see if they still fancy the idea.

Imagine, if you will, a really hot day. Your about to run a marathon. You join the back of a very, very long queue for the portaloos. You're nervous about the marathon. Your tummy is all rumbling and churning (so is every one elses). Remember its really really hot. You finally get to the front of the queue and step into the portaloo....... have you been there before? Well that doesn't even start to describe what the smell is like cleaning a tank out!

Anyway. Got the level below the power switch and managed to fix the hose onto the pipe (the old hose clip had eroded). Took a few goes to get the switch completely dry and stop tripping.
Had a long hot shower once I was finished. Didn't quite get to the wire brush and Detol stage, but I really need a good scrub to get the memory of the smell away.
Not a nice start to the weekend.

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