Friday, January 16, 2009

Creative Every Day = Septic System Thursday

Yesterday was a day that made Creative Every Day (hereafter to be known as CED) a challenge. Let me begin with a small lesson in rural living, for you city-dwellers: we live in the county, not a city, and our water is supplied by a 4-party well that we share with three of our neighbors (no kidding!). Our waste-water (sinks, showers, laundry, ETC.) is dealt with by our own septic system. We had it designed specifically for our lot when we were getting our building permit, and then it was installed, per design. Septic systems are quite the engineering marvel: my parents have a very special one that is basically a swimming pool made of concrete, filled with sand, that sits under their deck. Ours is much less exciting than that, but it is amazing, in that it uses gravity and evaporation and takes up quite a bit of land in our woods, but is invisible and has no noticeable effect on our property.

Anyway, two days ago, as I was taking a shower, I became aware of a very pesky sound, as if our doorbell or some one's timer had gotten stuck ON. After getting dressed, I went outside to investigate, & followed the annoying alarm-sound to a small grey box on the side of our house (which I have managed to ignore for the past 9 years). I couldn't ignore it anymore, because an orange light on top of it was flashing, and the alarm-noise was coming from it. I pushed a button that said, "Silence" (oh, if I only had one of those with me at all times!) and found blessed relief from the loud ringing. You have probably guessed by now (because you are clever) that the alarm was coming from our septic system. Did you know that septic systems have alarms? I didn't --but I do now.

To make a long story short, I made some calls, and yesterday, the pumper truck came and charged us $700+ to take away the contents of our septic tanks (don't think about this too much), and their colleagues arrived later to tell us that our new (yes, we must buy a NEW) pump will cost us about $900. Friends, you do not want to argue about getting a new septic pump. You do not want troubles in this area of your life. FYI, a pump can only be expected to last about 9 years, and our house is 8 years and 10 months old.

So CED involved a lot of waiting, phone calls back and forth, the arrival of trucks and specialists (and the preparation of a turkey breast, for dinner, in the midst of this activity). I didn't take any photos; the whole subject is best treated without visual imagery.

MB & I spoke at length yesterday about how the present times are challenging us mentally, spiritually, economically, emotionally and physically. And we agreed that creative living - CED -can mean something as simple as responding creatively to the demands of your life. Maybe it's cooking more economically. Maybe it's giving your time/talent/things to charity, instead of giving money that you cannot spend. Maybe it's finding a new way to use something you already own, instead of buying a new one. Maybe it's staying home together, instead of going out. Maybe it's walking instead of driving. Whatever it might mean is as individual and varied in potential as people are varied. I've decided to treat CED to mean living creatively, listening creatively, responding creatively, acting creatively. It seems like a good thing to be reflecting about, given the upcoming inauguration of a new president.


Smileygirl said...

My favorite line in this post "don't think about this too much". OMG I am laughing soo hard right now. You are so cute and funny!

Yes, my "visual imagery" is overflowing right now. (much like your tank...)

Tami W. said...

OMG!! I’m so happy that you visited my blog! I have very few readers other than my family and it truly makes my day to find out that someone else has enjoyed what I’ve written.

I’m planning on writing a post explaining who my cast of characters are so that if you would like to continue reading, or if you go back and read my archives, you will know who everyone is.

Thank you so much for leaving a comment. It made my day!

I am so sorry about the loss of your daughter. I hope you can find solace in prayer and that you know you will see her again.

 Tami

Anonymous said...

I like your attitude here - I think it's often the most unpleasant tasks that merit a creative approach the most! On that note I am going to apply some creativity to finishing up some of my study this evening... your original CED post crossed my mind today as I tried a new approach to poaching an egg (achieved on the second try!) - perhaps I should have taken a photo!

I was wondering if you are familiar with the site - I thought some of its assignments gave a good angle to look at the everyday anew.


karengberger said...

Smiley, isn't it a great visual? YUK! =)

Irene, I just visited that site, and it looks really intriguing. I had never heard of it. Thanks for the tip!

Tami, you're welcome. I'm so glad that having visitors made you happy. Your blog is fun.

Kay said...

Karen.. you're a hoot today. :-D You had me laughing out loud!

My first thought was 'ick'. But I'm glad you're handling it with grace and a sense of humor.

Smileygirl said...

Ok I am going to use this approach now as I gather my documents for tax preparation. Worst task EVER!!! I'm not sure how I'm going to make this a creative project but lord willing, I am going to try!

Leah said...

Yes!! Creativity can mean something as simple (or complicated) as responding to a situation in a creative fashion. It sounds like you are quite skilled at this!

I grew up in the country, so I understand how pesky (and pricey) septic problems can be. Yucko! Glad you got through it. :-)

Dreamer girl said...

Wow, I like your creative every day idea. Very clever. I did not know that septic tanks have alarms. I would have been speechless on what to do.

Congrats to David, what a huge milestone.

I found your blog when I looked up people who were in common with my interests. Your blog moved me and I'm hooked.

You know I might try this creative idea.

Keep on inspiring!
P.S Your view from your home is spectacular.
Dreamer girl

Anonymous said...

We also have a septic tank and we get our water from our roof that trickles down into a tank underneath our house! Septic tanks are not fun - but I am impressed that you haven't had to pump it for 8 years! Wow! The City annexed us a few year ago - and we still have no water or sewer - but you can bet our property tax doubled. Ah, the joys of rural living! L in Alaska

karengberger said...

We had it done in 2002, but after Katie got sick, we forgot about it...until now!