Monday, 20 February 2017

Crash Bang again!!!

I have been so busy recently that I have not had the time to blog about all that has been happening.....and so much has been happening.
Gosh I don't even know where to start but I will try to fill in the blanks as the days go by.  So many things that I want to make a note of here.

I had planned to change up my grass verge once again due to maintenance upkeep.
I was tired of weeding and watering the asparagus fern that I had planted, plus the prickly fern fronds were trapping all manner of garbage blowing around in the breeze....I knew it was time for it to go.
I weeded it all out and gave the stone pavers to my girlfriend Ann.
The area stood empty until I could decide what to do with it.
A few days after Christmas Day (27th) I spotted a dark damp area outside my front wall where my water meter is located.

Water dampness seeping up the front wall.

I checked the meter and its connections for leaks but did not detect any.

As the days went by the damp area became waterlogged and my concern grew more.
Placed a call to the Water Authority and a work crew came out the same evening and dug around until they found the problem.

The connection for the water supply for my side of the street is located under the steps to my side entrance.  The connection was probably 10 years old and had worn was time to be replaced.
It was already dark when the work crew showed up but thankfully the problem area was located next to the street light.
The dedicated work crew worked hard taking turns at breaking up the concrete stone with a pick ace but at the same time being very careful not to do anymore damage.
Finally they found the worn connection after they had dug down into 3feet of muddy water and debris.

Even though they were dirty and sweaty, water soaked and mud caked, they still were a happy bunch and made me laugh quite a bit with the conversations that we had. 
I held my LED torch for extra light as they made the new underground connection.
I was really impressed how professional they were and they in turn were taken aback that a woman was outside with them in the fray of things.
At one point I may have given up but not these guys, they worked and worked until they fixed the problem. 
Many questions swam around in my mind....Gosh how do they do this kind of back breaking work all the do they manage to get their clothes clean after all that do they stay so positive in such working conditions....are they paid enough??
It made me realise even more that we the public owe these guys a ton of respect.
I took some cold drinks and water out for all of them....they really appreciated the kind gesture.
It being a cold night, the joker in the group announced, "Misses, you ain't got nothing stronger inside?  That juice going hurt my belly!" 
I laughed and returned inside to take a small portion of something strong for him which he promptly shared with his crew mates.

In about 45 minutes they had finished and tidied up and were on their way promising that the masonry crew would be back to fix back the steps and the small retaining wall.

 Naturally with everything all dug up, the large pieces of concrete debris made the area looked like a construction scrap yard.

A few days afterwards, the supervisor came by to check on the job that needed to be done to fix back the area.  He indicated that materials were at an all time low but would try to source some in order to make the front of my home look proper again.  I thanked him.

A couple of days after his visit (January 11th), the mason came by and did an excellent job at reinstalling the steps and the side areas.

A mason extraordinaire.
The mason was a true gentleman....a nice respectful young man who took great pride in his work....He worked quickly and cleaned up thoroughly as he worked...see the broom above.

No dilly dallying at out of the truck...assessed the job to be done and started pronto.

 His assistant mixing the concrete for the step repairs.

 Laying the steel to strengthen the concrete

 Making sure the consistency is right before casting.
When he was finished, I couldn't even tell where the damage was at all.

I was so impressed with the work and the manner in which he worked that I made a note of his contact number.

I was so happy that everything was looking all nice again because I was now ready to change the look of the verge again.
Just as I was about to begin my new project .....CRASH!!!! BANG!!

Well would you know it...exactly one month after the water main leak along comes more drama.
My neighbour on her way home one Friday afternoon (Jan 27th) drove over the road curb and smashed her car right into the wall area that had just been completed....she narrowly missed the street light by a very slight margin.

Thankfully she was okay....her car and the wall and the gate not so much.

Water was gushing everywhere....the water meter was completely destroyed as it had been knocked off the pipe connection.

A good quantity of soil in the front garden bed was washed away.

 Water meter smashed to smithereens.

Water formed a fast flowing river going down the side of my house.

The car was lodged firmly on to the small gate wall, but with the help of a kind gentleman who had a big truck it was eventually pulled back on to the was still driveable and after the busted tyre was changed by my neighbour down the street, she was able to drive it home.

The small gate was bent and the wall was knocked completely off from its support.  I managed to prop the wall up so the gate could remain closed and so that Brownie would be safe inside.

My poor neighbour was quite distraught over the incident and she promised to fix the damage as soon as possible.
Once again I called the Water Authority...they promised to come by pronto.
The water continued to spew out forming a rushing river flowing down the side of my house.
Thankfully a few guys saw the "water waste" and promptly attached the end connection to stop the flow.
I realised they were my neighbour's workmen and the following Friday evening I took some cold beers out to them as a THANK YOU.
However I was still without water since there was still no connection via the meter to my house.
The following day a water work crew came by and hooked our water line back up to the water supply....yeah I had water again!!
No meter was installed but I was told to go ahead with my water usage and I would be charged the minimum amount until a new meter is installed....I use minimum water anyway so no problem there.

I still could not start my new project because the area outside of my front wall was totally drenched.  I had to wait a few days for it to dry completely out.

In the meanwhile I obtained an estimate for the repairs from the mason (thank goodness I had requested his number...thanks Sean!!) and also a store estimate for the materials and presented them to my neighbour...I don't think she realised how much damage had been done but she assured me that she will honour her commitment to pay for the repairs.
The saga continues.

In case you wondering the first Crash Bang is here.


  1. My life is quite uneventful in comparison Virginia. After the problems the first time (in 2013) I do hope this turns out better.

    1. The neighbourhood is still experiencing problems and from the same source. We are working tirelessly to rectify the problems.
      Would you believe that nothing has been done to fix the damaged wall up to this point....more on that later when I write a post to highlight the saga.

  2. What most impresses me is how careful your public employees were to do a good job and how hard they worked. Not at all saying that we don't have good, skilled people here to do work like this, but it is not guaranteed; some utilities are better than others, some supervisors are better than others. Sounds like you have old-time craftsmen who take pride in their work. :)

    1. I too was pleasantly surprised at the care to detail that the water works crew took and the dedication and the "pride in work" ethic that the young mason had. I was so impressed that I have arranged for him to do my repairs in the future.
      It's like finding a needle in the haystack and I am so happy that our paths have crossed....a very nice young man indeed.


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