...and 13.5 hours later, I'm done for the day.
We continued to attempt to get the auger to work, and it did, but it took forever, the post-hole digger was not a good idea. The soil is basically solid clay. It's disgusting.
So, after we decided that maybe after pounding a rail road nail into the ground, the auger would work better. Viola! It did... proceed Hannah pounding in a railroad nail into ground and pulling it back out again, moving over 2 feet, repeating. Wash, rinse, repeat. 100 times.
We then took a break for lunch and went to the HyVee market and got pork tenderloin sandwiches, which were more like fried pork burgers. Quite good, but huge and I didn't manage to finish mine.
Might I add that we have 600 tomatoes alone? And the goal was to plant them today.... yeah, no, didn't happen. Between running out of gas, Jim wanting to get more gas/oil mixture, but mistakingly purchasing, 4-cylinder oil with 5 gallons of gas, the engine wouldn't start (b/c 4-cylinder oil isn't meant for mixing with gas like that...). So now we have 5 gallons of bad gas.
Meanwhile, Hannah continues.
Pound rail road nail into ground. 16-21 hits and it's in. Then flip the hammer over to pull it out and make sure the hole is visible for Jim. Always keeping the measurement-line in mind so that we have straight lines. Move over 2 feet. Pound rail road nail into ground. 16-21 hits and it's in. Then flip the hammer over to pull it out and make sure the hole is visible for Jim. Always keeping the measurement-line in mind so that we have straight lines. Move over 2 feet. Pound rail road nail into ground. 16-21 hits and it's in. Then flip the hammer over to pull it out and make sure the hole is visible for Jim. Always keeping the measurement-line in mind so that we have straight lines. Move over 2 feet. Pound rail road nail into ground. 16-21 hits and it's in. Then flip the hammer over to pull it out and make sure the hole is visible for Jim. Always keeping the measurement-line in mind so that we have straight lines.
Awhile later, Fred, our neighbor comes over on his 4-wheeler with little Jessie on his lap (as always). He asks us if we're going to burn off the grass left on the topsoil. We tried, didn't take so well. He tried too, no luck, so he then started moving the loose aggregates and grass (mostly white clover) over to the side with the little plow attached with a wench to his 4-wheeler (little Jessie always on his lap, of course). After a little while longer, he brings a sledge hammer over to me because, well, it's heavier than my hammer. Sweet. Only 5-7 swings per hole. My tempo starts picking up. Even though the auger is temporarily out of service because of the bad gas in it, I keep going, knowing that we'll have to have this finished somehow.
100 more holes successfully measured and pounded by the railroad nail.... making it what, over 200 by now?
After awhile longer, Jim just gets kinda frustrated with how long everything is taking. He looks into what it would cost to rent a tiller. The soil had really only been disked, not plowed, so just the surface was loose, and it really just broke up the white clover that was taking over the field. His result is that it's $100 to rent one for 4 hours. He said "well, I think we're taking a vacation" implying that the tiller, would, indeed be a vacation from all the work we've been doing and making everything easier, plus that's about the amount it costs too... well, at least a day trip anyway.
Around 6:30, I think (time was pretty relative... the sun was still out, that's all I know), Rose pulls up, followed shortly by John, Nancy, and Rachel. We show them around with all the work we're doing. Nancy says that she has a farming friend who lives not far from here that she called and will come out Monday evening and till the rest of the garden for us (!!!!!!!!!!).
So all.... all of that... hammering, pulling, moving, measuring, repeating... over half of it won't be used. That's alright, I did what was the plan until the plan changed.
It was around 90 or so all day, but partly cloudy, and at one point it kinda sprinkled for about an hour (we're supposed to get a thunderstorm sometime today), which was amazingly wonderful to work in. My arms are a bit red from being in the sun all day, thankfully, I had earplugs, sunglasses, and a hat on. that helped. But because of the wind, my shirt kept blowing up, so my lower back is red too. I kept thinking about working in the hot summer sun like we did back when we re-roofed our house in Oregon, and I didn't want any major health issues to happen, so I made sure to drink a LOT (know for a fact that I drank around 1.5 gallons over part of the afternoon alone), and made sure to always bring out those SoBe Lifewaters to Jim, instead of the diet Mt. Dew that he usually drinks. Jan kept brining him diet Pepsi's, but I really tried to push at least the lifewaters (not unlike Vitamin Water), because at least they might help keep a person hydrated.
I mean, I can't really handle the tap water here. I don't know what it is, but it's revolting. I've taken to mixing the purefitness version (no aspartame) of crystal light 4x weaker than it's supposed to be just to make the water here palatable.
I've stopped noticing when I'm sweating here. It's so humid, so it's basically a constant thing.
The good news is that we have about 85 or so plants in the ground.
The other good news is that the whole rest of the garden area is going to be actually tilled and plowed on Monday.
I'm really tired. I can't even begin to tell you how many typos I have been making while typing this. I haven't worked at day like today in a very long time. It was rewarding in that it was literally, a hard day's work. But it was hard, and my arms are hot, and I'm hungry and quite exhausted, but I'd like to fit in some homework reading if I can so that I won't have to cram it in next week if possible. Who knows, my brain might already be too gone for any of that scholarly schtuffs.
I'm coated in dirt.
Is a serious shower in order? I believe so.
Uploaded a few more pictures to this facebook album (again, you don't need to comment on all of them...!!! unless you're my mom :) she gets the trump card on that anytime).