Remember biorhythms? I haven’t heard of them in years. For you embryos that are too young to remember, there was this theory that your intellect, physical well being, and emotions each had a certain rhythm of highs and lows. Each one had a different length and seldom were they ever in sync. The idea was that you could plot a chart of your personal biorhythm, so that you would know when you were going to be at your best or worse.
Yesterday I drained my koi pond and refilled it, getting it ready for the summer and for the planting of new pond plants. I wanted to get started early and despite the fairly chilly temperatures I decided to press on. While I was working on it, I wore a pair of chest high waders, held up by suspenders to keep dry. I kept my socks and blue jeans on inside the waders because although they typically do a good job of keeping you dry, but provide little in the way of insulation. Only problem is the small hole near the top of the boot part on the right leg, which I became only too well aware of as the still frigid pond water streamed down, filled my boot, and slowly began working its way up my leg. Fortunately, since I had already began draining the pond by this point, I was tall enough so that the water was not deep enough that it could rise much higher than my mid thigh. Not to be defeated so easily, the water began using my blue jeans as a wick of sorts whereby it could slowly creep up the material of my jeans and eventually my boxers, until it apparently reached its intended target. Amazingly enough the water wick process stopped somewhere in the middle of its work only subjecting one of the Wonder Twins to its icy grip. Needless to say, and you really need to be a guy to appreciate this, it is a rather odd feeling. To say you feel off-balance is fair, but it is more like your gyroscope is busted, because you seem to list to port.
Since I was already cold and wet, and the work still needed to be done, I decided to press on. Once I had completed that portion of my work in the water, I decided to exit the pond and pull the biological filter out. Climbing out of a koi pond which is lined with slippery rocks, particularly when one leg is semi-frozen and not easily lifted thanks to the additional water can be tricky. This proved to be the case when I slipped, fell backwards, and wound up submerging my lower half with the water now rushing in over the top of my waders. Delightful!
I managed to climb up the pond wall to the biological filter, and as I did a spray of water streamed out of the hole near my boot. If you have never SCUBA dived while wearing a wet suit and then climbed out of the water, or attended a summer camp somewhere filled with mischievous campers, then you may not have ever had the pleasure of the sensation as the water, now warmed by your body, slowly ebbs away leaving you suddenly exposed to the cold. I won’t bother to explain the incredible urge that this brings on – in abundance, but will just say it was not pleasant. Trying to take my mind off the need to exit stage left, I decided to focus on getting the filter out, so that I could then complete this portion of my water work, extricate myself from the useless waders, and my wet clothes.
If you do not know what a biological pond filter is, I will explain. There is a hard plastic pit at the top of my waterfall. Inside this pit there is material designed to allow bacteria to grow which feed upon the waste produced by the fish. Water from the pump is pushed up through the filter media and then cascades down the waterfall. I removed the first layer of material, and then two mesh bags filled with similar material. Reaching further down into the pit I was able to grasp the bottom layer of the material. It being filled with – let’s just say – helpful bacteria, it is quite heavy so I was careful as I lifted it. Feeling rather happy with myself for being able to remove the filter media, while at the same time acting as a human sprinkler system for my berm plants as the water continued to spray from the hole in the right leg of my waders, I reached down to grab the rack I had built which hold up the media off the bottom of the pit. The rocks on which I was kneeling were not stable, and they slid away resulting in me falling head first into the pit of fish poo water. This was of course not pleasant but it did afford the opportunity for the water which had been trapped in the left leg of my waders to escape and run down my chest and back. Delightful!
I climbed down from the berm, removed the waders, and did my best to dry myself on the small hand towel I had brought out with me (Fortunately – this was not the Decorative Towel of which I blogged earlier). I pressed on and began work on reassembling the ultraviolet light and pump used in koi ponds to help eradicate algae. As I was struggling to reconnect the old hose it cracked and broke open. Hoses like this tend to become brittle with use and it is not uncommon for them to break. The fitting was 1 1/2 and the new hose was 1 1/2. Now that seems like it ought to work right – wrong. The hose has to go up and over the fitting. After several minutes of cursing and attempting to shove the one thing forcibly into the other in a manner very reminiscent of a scene from the old movie Midnight Express about a hapless American in a Turkish men’s prison, the struggle was ended when the screwdriver I was using as a pry slipped and embedded itself into the fleshy area between the thumb and index finger of my left hand. Delightful!
I decided to put on some dry clothes, go to Ace Hardware, and get a similar part with a reduced opening. Did they have one – no. I went to Lowes. I found two parts that would almost get me there but not quite. I went to Home Depot – nothing. I went to Locke Supply – less than nothing. Back to Lowes, where I retrieved the two parts from before and continued my search through the seemingly endless number of bins all filled with nothing I could use. Finally, I found another component which was not in the correct bin, but it got me closer to what I needed. I took these three items, and drove back to Ace. I amazingly found two other items that I could glue together and this conglomeration would finally take the place of the one part I had before. Awesome!
The remainder of the day went pretty much the same. I did however end the day by going to Louie’s, and I don’t even remember the first tall frosty mug as it disappeared down my gullet. Don’t ask me what made me think of biorhythms, but I did look mine up to see if I was crashing on all three indexes, but I was not. So now, I wonder what is in store for me next month when all my indexes hit rock bottom all at the same time. Anyone care to get on a plane with me that day or maybe go shark diving?