Wednesday, April 9, 2014


As I mentioned in a previous post, Mike and I headed to the farm Saturday afternoon (April 5) in hopes of de-winterizing the farmhouse. The major task is to turn on the water and hopefully heave a sigh of relief that the pump, the tanks, the pipes, the faucets, etc., are all functional. Well, we didn’t get that sigh of relief this year. To continue and go on (as Ina would say) –

The situation was that the holding tank in the mechanical room would build pressure when turned off, but as soon as we turned it on, we could hear a rush of water. The pressure in the tank quickly decreased to the point of automatic shut off. Mike thought the problem was between the holding tank and the hot water tank. I wasn’t so sure. I thought I could hear water under the house. I sent Mike back down there several times, and he couldn’t find a leak.

Well, it was mid-afternoon Saturday and neither the pump guy nor the plumber were available, but it was clear that we needed more information. We hadn’t intended to stay anyway, so we set about our other errands. Mike got the 4-wheeler running and loaded it on the trailer so that we could pull it back to Clarkston. I unloaded the boxes of supplies and then prepared Hallie’s little mission rocker for the trip to town so that we can take it to her.
Of course I toured the yard, and Bess and I walked down the lane to inspect the water damage there. The lane did wash a bit during the run-off and will have to be fixed. However, it could be worse. We can drive over it.

First thing Monday morning Mike called the pump guy, who advised him to check a valve on the side of the hot water tank. We decided to return to the farm Tuesday afternoon (April 8), which was yesterday. It was a lovely warm afternoon – perfect for a trip into the upper country.

At the house, Mike found the valve on the hot water tank was closed as it should be, so that meant the problem was elsewhere. Therefore, he donned old clothes – really old clothes – and once again disappeared under the house through the access door in the mechanical room. This time he persisted until he found the broken line, which was under the kitchen sink in an area difficult to access. A previous repair on that pipe had come loose. Well, now we knew we needed a visit from the plumber. Arrangements were made before we left Gilbert.

I just feel at a loss without water. Water at the farmhouse still seems magical to me since I remember the years when we had to carry it. Mike was wet when he came up from under the house, so he went to the pond to rinse off. Rinsing off in the pond? You have to wonder about that.

And speaking of the pond, it’s full and there’s water in the spillway, but we notice that it’s dry towards the barn. In other words, we don’t have the standing water we have seen in the past, which is good – and bad. We may not have as much water in reserve this year.

Before leaving the house, we swept and/or vacuumed. Of course, Nellie and Bess enjoyed the outings to the farm. Bess runs all around while Nellie quietly explores. Yes, she’s slowing down, but she’s learned that you don’t have to rush around to be good at what you do. 

After completing chores, we drove back to town, arriving before suppertime. 

[Photos: 1) The farmhouse in the distance. 2) Daffodils -- the fruits of my labor last fall. 3) Crown Imperial Frittalaria. 4) The wash out in the lane. 5) More daffodils and Crown Imperial. 6)  Nellie poking around at the pond. 7) The barn reflected in the pond -- and if you look closely, you can see a pair of ducks.] KW


DrJulieAnn - The Modern Retro Woman said...

Beautiful photos!

I'm glad Mike was finally able to find the problem. Sorry that it wasn't as easy as just turning a nob :(

Chris said...

It is indeed strange when there's no water. It seems as if every single thing we can think of to do involves it and we are truly at a standstill. I'm proud of you for thinking to vacuum!