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high desert. small house.

Days 29-35: Tarantulas, floods & fun

Monday, 8/29
We received 700 pounds of green beans late in the afternoon and started a marathon roast session.  We finished twelve batches late in the evening and headed home around 7:30pm.

It should be noted that we are not intentionally delaying finishing the trim.  We’ve had rain nearly every day, which has prevented us from being able to paint and cut outside.

Tuesday, 8/30
We had a full day at work and headed home around 5:30pm.  No house work as we were recovering from the previous night.

Wednesday, 8/31
Due to successive rain/mud events, we have been talking about fencing and gravel a lot lately.  We have 2-3 local options for material delivery and a few guys who can bring a bobcat over and spread it around.  We also investigated different privacy fence options that aren’t going to require a ton of effort or cost.

I left work a little early to visit ye ol’ laundromat.  When I was driving back to pick up the laundry, I noticed a larger-than-usual, surprising animal crossing the street.  It was a huge tarantula!  I immediately pulled over and ran back to stop traffic from hitting it.  He froze right in the center of one of the lanes so I started looking for something to pick it up with.  Thankfully, a gentleman (later identified as Reuben) was putting his recycling out.  I called him over and together, we flicked him into a Dr. Pepper box and deposited him in some grass near a primary school (hahahahah, take THAT kinder-garteners!).

After returning home with my laundry, Brian and I decided to go back out and CAPTURE HIM!  We were thrilled to find him in the same spot and successfully transported him back to our property.  We released him into a cave near our compost pile (giant pile of coffee grounds and filters) so he wasn’t close to the house or where the dogs eat.  How exciting!

We later learned that the males come out during this time of year to find a female and mate, after which they may or may not be eaten by the female.  It takes them 7 years in their burrow to mature prior to this big adventure.  The females can live to be 20 years old.  We asked several people about it the next day in the drive-thru and apparently, it isn’t uncommon to spot them.

Extended form trying to climb out.

Extended form trying to climb out.

He then became very scarred and made himself as small as possible.

He then became very scared and made himself as small as possible.

Thursday, 9/1
Brian decided on a creative fencing solution that he is particularly excited about –  he’s going to use (free) pallets available locally and mount them upright on t-posts.  Then, we’ll attach add 3′ x 6′ pieces of R-panel steel roofing to take the privacy height up to the (locally regulated maximum) of 6′ above grade.  The result is a quick, sturdy, seamless and easily relocatable privacy fence wherein a primary structural element is free pallets.  The pallets may be wood, but they are free so one does not feel bad about leaving them unfinished.  The other materials are weather immune.

We had some rain at the shack while we were working.  Nothing too terrible or surprising…or so we thought.  As we drove home, we found the terrain of some areas to look slightly off.  Roadside cliffs on highway 180, which I believe have signs that indicate “rock slides possible”, had visible signs of recent rock slides.  BIG rocks in and near the road.  As I drove down the curvy hill to our house, there were humongous spans of road with rock/dirt rivers running across them.  The biggest rocks were 10-12 inches in diameter.

It was shocking how much water had fallen on this area, given how little we received at work, a mere 3 miles away.  We are grateful we built our home high up.  Even though we are at the base of Boston Hill, we are still well above most of the town in that area.

The uphill banks near the house and driveway were now thoroughly riven with 3″ channels.  The french drain below the bank (which was originally filled river rock so that water could get down to the underground pipe and be directed away from the house) was completely covered over with the thick dirt that had been displaced by the aforementioned channels.  It looks like we’ll have to dig/scrape much of the french drain to get it functional again.

We couldn’t fathom the amount of water that must have fallen on this side of town and we just kept asking ourselves, “what?  what happened?”  The next morning I found these videos, featuring the deluge downtown, which explained it all –

Heavy rains cause flooding in Silver City

Cheyenne St - You can see the big 'river of dirt' left over after the water moved through.

Cheyenne St – You can see the big ‘river of dirt’ left over after the water moved through.

The dirt runoff from our hill onto the driveway.

The dirt runoff from our hill onto the driveway.

More runoff onto the building pad.

More runoff onto the building pad.

Deep dirt!

Deep dirt!

Friday, 9/2
Very busy day at Bean Vivant.  Brian managed to make a run home with some pallets.  The local hardware store is thrilled that he is taking some.

In other news, the hot water heater arrived!!!  We can take hot showers again!

Saturday, 9/3
We started our day with a glorious sunrise hike on Boston Hill.  Then work, visit home to drop stuff off, oil change at the In-and-Out Lube and Wash, then quick dinner, followed by an hour long tire rotation at Walmart and finally home for the evening. Brian installed the hot water heater while I made dinner.  Long day!

2016-09-03 06.56.29

Sunrise hike on Boston Hill

2016-09-03 07.21.40

Mushrooms on our property following the storm.

We found this neat plant on Boston Hill.

We found this neat plant on Boston Hill.

Dinner at the new sushi restaurant in town - Sakura. We ordered the 16 piece sashimi combo with an extra bowl of miso soup. We also tried the seaweed salad but will likely pass on it in the future.

Dinner at the new sushi restaurant in town – Sakura. We ordered the 16 piece sashimi combo with an extra bowl of miso soup. We also tried the seaweed salad – not bad – but we will likely pass on it in the future.

Sunday, 9/4
Time for a Tucson visit.  We were pretty efficient and found what we needed quickly.  One of the priorities was a TV wall mount at Harbor Freight.  We had a coupon for a big discount and wanted to have it on hand so we could start experimenting with the TV.  It has been setup on a stack of cardboard boxes for 2.5 years now, ever since we sold the stand.  🙂

We also purchased corner guard moulding for the top edges of the bathroom.  The highlight of our Tucson visit – Cinnabon.  Holy delicious-ness.

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