I grew up as pretty much a city girl. Or at least city enough to not have to worry about what happens after you flush the toilet. Out here, in the almost boonies, we have something called a septic tank.
As far as I can figure out, everything that is flushed down the drain goes into this tank that happens to be buried in our back yard. The water part drains into the dirt in our yard (in technical terms it’s called a drain field) while the rest of it…well, I’m not sure I really want to think of what happens to that…
Anyways, you are supposed to get these tanks cleaned out every few years. (Now that’s one job that I really wouldn’t want to have) So, being the somewhat responsible homeowner that I am, I called to have our tanks pumped. (I really should have had this done a year or so ago, but you did note the “somewhat” responsible part, right?) When I was quoted the cost, I was told that it would cost $85 an hour extra if they had to do any digging…and they charged only by the hour.
cheap frugal person that I am, I had no choice but to start digging. My dad I and went out back with shovels in hand and a vague idea of where the tank might be. After probing with a thin metal rod and digging up several holes, I thought it might be a good idea to hop online and look up septic tanks to get an idea of what we were looking for. Just in case you are ever wondering, the Internet won’t tell you where you keep your septic tank.
A few phone calls to the county later, we headed out towards the health department to have them look up the location of my tank on microfiche. We stared at the barely legible printout with a sinking feeling. We had driven all the way out there to get something that made as much sense as Greek to us. Fortunately the kind-hearted lady that had helped us noticed our bafflement and asked if we wanted to have an inspector translate the document for us. The inspector wasn’t nearly as friendly, but he took pity on us and did his best to explain what we were looking at. Dad and I decided that we would resume our hole digging the next day.
My plan was that if I didn’t mention the fact that our back yard was all dug up, nobody would notice. Of course, I was wrong. The family that doesn’t always detect haircuts or even that the furniture has been rearranged, immediately noted the holes in the yard. When I explained to Shaun why we were digging, he just laughed at me. He has a hard time understanding why I would put in all that time and hard work, just to save a few dollars. (A few? It’s eighty-five!!) How could I have married a man that just doesn’t understand these things?
The septic guys will be here first thing tomorrow morning. I can only hope that they appreciate our magnificent hole that reveals what I’m almost positive is the septic tank.
Maybe they won’t notice all those smaller holes surrounding it…