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#35954 June 17th, 2005 at 07:08 AM
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When we moved into this house, we noticed a drainage outlet coming into the property behind us (which happens to be our neices house) from the alleyway. It was for rainwater collected from the alley and it would drain into her yard and then run diagonally to our property out a sewage 'hole' that's in our yard.

You can see the drainage hole here - where the white rocks are along the fenceline, between fenceposts 4 & 5 counting left to right.
[Linked Image]

The 'incoming' water is behind me to my left, as I stand taking this picture, here: [Linked Image]

You can see it's got a looong way to travel, and in process, has been steadily washing out the land (which is why that retaining wall was put up (right, first picture), I assume.

Well, after a talk with our mayor (yes, small town here!) they've agreed to put in a drain pipe from the incoming to the sewer, underground. They started digging one day last week, and haven't been back since frown This is the mess that is our outer yard right now:
[Linked Image] [Linked Image]

I say 'outer' because thankfully, from the retaining wall to the street is where our house, shed and flowers are. I've been focusing on 'up here' for now, since there's so much yard to deal with as it is. Next year (assuming they FINISH by then) I'll start working on the 'outer' yard.

Anyway, just been kinda blue about the mess they're making when I've been trying SO hard to make this place look presentable ters and knew you all would understand.

Thanks for listening to me whine!
Mary

#35955 June 17th, 2005 at 08:26 AM
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Have you called them? Surely they can't leave it like that any longer. Can you call them and nicely say that you're worried that this is a safety or health hazard? That doesn't seem like you're complaining, just interested in a safe outcome. On a happier note, your yard looks really green.

#35956 June 17th, 2005 at 07:01 PM
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Really, I'd be on the phone to them
wondering where the heck they are!!!

Quote
I've been focusing on 'up here' for now, since there's so much yard to deal with as it is.
Take it one thing at a time, think about what
you want... and do little by little..
Gardening is a work in progress and you will
never be done.... never, just one more thing here, and oooooh, I saw this idea... and it's always something more to do and add.
BUT that's the fun of gardening..

And think about "BONES" or Structures first..
bigger things that need to go in first and then
fill with little things..

Like a gazebo or water feature...

#35957 June 17th, 2005 at 07:11 PM
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Poor Mary. I would be in an uproar about it. I would definitely call and get someone to set a "finishing" date. That way you will know that they are going to complete it and you won't have to worry about it until that date comes and goes. If they have it fixed by then, great. If they don't, raise some *!@#$%! Squeaky wheel gets the grease!

Dianna

#35958 June 17th, 2005 at 08:23 PM
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I would have to be really bad and dig down deep then take the dirt and pile it in a burm around the edges and have one great water feature that I knew would get plenty of fresh water every year. I'd have a heavy duty pump in there and plan on doing all my watering with the pond water and not have to pay city water prices for anything. I found that city water in Port Orchard was one expensive item.

#35959 June 17th, 2005 at 11:16 PM
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It took me a bit to figure out that you have a municipal storm drain in your front yard. Too bad they couldn't move that closer to the road.

I'd imagine the job was added to the list but the materials needed to finish it were not on had so the workers did the part they could and moved on.

No reason to squeek just yet. A friendly call thanking them for promptly coming out and asking why they haven't finsihed, is it because something else came up or are you waiting for materials to finish the job? From there you should be able to get an aproximate completion date.

If the work was your responsibility and the contractor you hired was performing like this it would be a different story. That's just how it is.

#35960 June 17th, 2005 at 11:48 PM
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Thanks for your posts (cyber hugs). They have a town meeting every first monday, and I will be the squeeky wheel in July. If they don't do any more by then, I will definitely go to see what's up. I'll definitely throw in the mention of the EPA as you suggested, Sheri, since my mention of it during our initial conversation is what got him to agree on a pipe rather than an open trench in the first place. I dont think calling the mayor at this point would really help, since I already got the speil about how everyone in town works on a volunteer basis, and that the town has 'no money' because we have no businesses here (which was also a dig to us, since the town knows we run a business from our house - but since we sell online and not locally, they don't get any tax money, and mr. mayor doesn't like it).

Weezie - I need to rebuild the built in porch and redo the shed walls, since they both have severe (in my opinion) water damage, from shoddy construction, but lack money to, so I've been focusing on stuff I can do for free or close to it. It's kept me smiling, knowing I can make some changes, even if it's not the major ones that need to be made yet. I do want to put in a pond, but have to wait on funds, and also wanted to put it out in the space they're working on now, so it'll have to wait too frown

Tammy, initially we were covering the drain hole, since it's on our property and we could, with the natural pond in mind. (If ya can't beat it, join it mentality). That's what got them started talking to us about fixing it. Our water bill isn't bad (about $15/mo), but I love water features, and would have been okay with a pond back there built by ma nature and not us smile

LMT - the sad thing is, just beyond the fence is a sidewalk, and on the other side of the sidewalk is a sewer. Apparantly the previous owner wouldn't cooperate and let them run a pipe at the time - or so the rumor goes. Even if they do complete this project, I believe they plan on running the pipe to end just in the 'general vicinity' of that drain hole...not connected in any way. Did I mention my partner is deathly afraid of snakes? Grumble.

I'll keep you all posted. Thanks again for your support!

Mary smile

#35961 June 17th, 2005 at 11:57 PM
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Mary I hear you on every word you said..
Been there, still there, know exactly what
you mean...
Just keep happy and that smile!!!

I THANK GOD everyday, for what I do have..
*especially when I find it for free*
and it's enough!!! So, you just keep on smilin'
and hopin'.. you'll have a nice yard eventually!!!

#35962 June 18th, 2005 at 12:49 AM
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Yaknow Weezie, I recently 'grew' a little mentally, I think. I used to stress so bad about money and paying bills, that I spent my life (wasted it) worrying. I finally made it to a place, somehow, that I can be okay with where we are financially, because all those months that I worried about making the bills, well, we made it somehow. Had I not worried we would have still made it, only I would have saved myself that worry. I'm so thankful for having found gardening - it's about time I found a hobby that I really love smile It keeps my mind clear and stops most of the worry. I found out from my mom yesterday that my grandfather was a pro gardener and ran a greenhouse. My dad always gardened, and here I am. Gardening in the family for 100 years LOL In the meantime, I'll enjoy every new bloom I get, as few and far between as they may be...someday I'll have something new blooming every day! smile

Thanks again, Weezie - hugs!
Mary

#35963 June 18th, 2005 at 01:13 AM
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I'd still make a call on Monday (about 1:30 pm, back from lunch but still around). If, by the first Monday of July, it isn't completed then it should be an issue. Also, not connecting the drainage pipe to the storm drain is idiotic and more expensive in the long run, but not a complete surprise.

#35964 June 18th, 2005 at 03:14 AM
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Also, not connecting the drainage pipe to the storm drain is idiotic and more expensive in the long run, but not a complete surprise
I couldn't agree with you more, but I guess I'm glad they're doing this much, assuming they're DOING this much. I guess they figure it's really our problem, since its on our land and not public land, so if we wanted it fixed we'd have to get it done? Im not really sure what the mentality is, really. One complaint I have about moving from NYC to smalltown, USA is most people here half-*ss repairs, etc., instead of doing it the right way the first time. mad

#35965 June 18th, 2005 at 06:20 AM
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"Did I mention my partner is deathly afraid of snakes? Grumble."

Are you having a problem with snakes too?

I'm sure there are a lot of perks that go along with living in a town without a lot of businesses. Not much traffic I'll bet. And not much crime either??? I think I would like that type of living.

As far as money, I've been there myself. When my husband got so sick I was worried constantly about what was going to happen. And like you, we're still here exactly where we would have been without all the worrying.

What type of business do you have?

#35966 June 18th, 2005 at 06:38 AM
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Are you having a problem with snakes too?
Well, kinda but not really. One day a few weeks ago we were out by the retaining wall (which is in bad shape, as you may be able to see from my pic), and I put my foot on one of the railroad ties and rocked it back & forth to see how sturdy it was moving the tie. Sure enough, about a 3' long gray snake came shooting out of where I was. Helen went running back into the house LOL (I know I shouldn't laugh), and I stood there trying to get a better look, so I could figure out what kind it was. Sometimes my curiosity overshadows my common sense. I never got a good look at it, so all I knew was it was a 3' long light gray snake. I was just glad it took off the opposite way of us. I'm sure I woulda came to my senses had he not gone the other way! sca

Quote
I'm sure there are a lot of perks that go along with living in a town without a lot of businesses. Not much traffic I'll bet. And not much crime either??? I think I would like that type of living.
Needless to say, it's a HUGE change for me, having lived my entire life in NYC. I do love it, though. I miss some things, like carvel, dunkin donuts, and decent pizza! frown The town population is about 300 (or less, but definitely not more). It's peaceful, open, clean, and green! smile Crime is zero to none. We leave our doors unlocked, day, night, even on vacation. That took a LOT to get used to. The only 'crime' if you can call it that, is the neighborhood kids that get routy every once in a while, but nothing at all major.

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What type of business do you have?
We run an online business, selling mostly on ebay (trek-visual). We started selling Franklin Mint stuff while we were in NY, and started doing enough volume so that we could go full time. Especially with the cost of living being much lower here, we do pretty good sometimes. Other times, it gets frighteningly slow - like now, when people are gardening instead of shopping! shk

#35967 June 19th, 2005 at 09:37 PM
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Too bad you can't change the flow of the water in some way - one of those projects where you make a pool of water, build up beside it with rocks so the water can overflow into another small pool even thought the first one is lower.

I think there was a thread on this forum about that kind of thing - it was very interesting. You end up with a little rivulet flowing upwards.

Complicated, yeah, but anything's better than trying to battle with city hall.

#35968 June 20th, 2005 at 12:37 AM
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Originally posted by MaryReboakly:
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Also, not connecting the drainage pipe to the storm drain is idiotic and more expensive in the long run, but not a complete surprise
I couldn't agree with you more, but I guess I'm glad they're doing this much, assuming they're DOING this much. I guess they figure it's really our problem, since its on our land and not public land, so if we wanted it fixed we'd have to get it done? Im not really sure what the mentality is, really. One complaint I have about moving from NYC to smalltown, USA is most people here half-*ss repairs, etc., instead of doing it the right way the first time. mad
It's not uncommon for even small cities to have one drain (it's all pipes!). Rain water and sewage all ends up in the same place which increases the cost of treating sewage. It isn't your problem that municipalities were short sighted. They drained rain water into the sewer so they didn't have to run separate lines now they are dealing with their short sighted approach. It isn't equitable to ask you to pay a disproportionate share, which is what using your yard as a drain is doing.

That said, I'm sure a change in Federal regulations lays just under the surface.

#35969 June 20th, 2005 at 01:22 AM
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Sounds like we need to add garden stuff to your online catalog stuff lol.

If only I were a better artist I'd be sending you a portfolio. lol

Don't worry from what I've read 50% of retail business is done from thanksgiving to christmas. Just remember to save some of the profits for the rest of the year lol.

#35970 June 20th, 2005 at 09:08 AM
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Sad thing is, this past holiday was horrible for sales. I heard it from my suppliers, I heard it from other sellers. It stunked! Ah well, as long as the bills get paid I'm ok! The yacht and mansion will have to wait a few more years wink

#35971 June 21st, 2005 at 07:28 AM
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They're baaa-aaack!
Apparantly there was some mechanical problem with the backhoe. They fixed it today and finished digging the trench. I saw, with my own two eyeballs, a piece of pipe - so I'm hopeful this is a reality. Wahoo! Stay tuned for more next time on 'As the backhoe...hoes?' Could make for an interesting reality show eh? laugh

#35972 June 21st, 2005 at 07:48 AM
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What time did they show up?

#35973 June 21st, 2005 at 07:56 AM
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Oh, about 10. Worked about an hour, left. May be they'll be back to do a little more next week! Sheesh.

#35974 June 21st, 2005 at 08:28 AM
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Doing things inefficiently is job security, when there is no competition. Set your sundail for Wednesday/Thursday early afternoon to make the same call I suggested earlier in this thread. Tempt them with some honey, sting them with a commitment.

#35975 June 21st, 2005 at 08:43 AM
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Actually, that's part of the problem. The 2 guys doing the work are about 70, and they work on a volunteer basis. Everything is done here by volunteers. We don't have a fire dept, but we do have a volunteer dept. No police in town, if there's a problem, the next town over that's a little bigger sends someone over. The mayor gets paid $10 a month, literally. There's a very, very, very small town budget, so that's why I guess I'm lucky they're doing this at all. I wouldn't even have to call the mayor - he lives right down the street! Ahhh, small town USA...gotta love it wink

#35976 June 21st, 2005 at 09:52 AM
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Aside from college, I'm living in a 35k superpower city for the first time. I'm used to 4k, 3k and 1k. In fact, once upon a time this little place had a post office so it was once a town that had about 150 people, on a good day.

Shoot, not only do people go past my house riding horses, they go past my house in horse drawn carriages.

The keys are in the car & truck and have been for 6 years. I love it!

#35977 June 21st, 2005 at 10:21 AM
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LOL! I hear ya - only I did it in reverse. I'm from NYC, so you can imagine the culture shock that hit when we moved here. We actually have a post office in town...but that'd be the only business in town. We have 150 people on a good day here, though I cant say we've got any horses or carriges in town...but there are Menonite communities about 5 minutes drive from here. I haven't 'graduated' to leaving the keys in the car yet though wink

#35978 June 23rd, 2005 at 05:24 AM
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Keys in the car, house unlocked. Bliss, prue bliss.


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