House and Acreage Restoration, Yardwork

Into the Woods (Part I)

The Grove….I was I could capture it's splendor and vastness a little better than in a photo.
The Grove….I wish I could capture it’s splendor and vastness a little better than in a photo.

I felt pretty clever considering the musical “Into the Woods” is coming out in theatres with one of my favorite actresses (Meryl Streep) soon. Because this past weekend, I was compelled to go into our woods. It was fifty degrees in December-how could a person NOT want to explore?

First, let me start by saying we are stuck in that limbo currently. The limbo where the sun is down by 4:30pm…the weather is up and down…concerts and other commitments are causing all sorts of bumps in the house project road.

Tyler generally has three nights a week of commitments, and every other weekend committed to some playing gig or sound gig or something. (Teachers’ days don’t end at 3:30 pm, just so you know).

All the siding I finished painting last week had to be moved back to the house. Which meant borrowing a trailer and then dropping it back off. While Tyler was doing this, I decided to go into our tree grove.

We own this whole mess of trees by the former railroad tracks. This spring and summer, there was just too much foliage for me to feel comfortable walking through it. That…and the possibility of skunks, ticks and other critters. Lots of critters live in the grove. There is animal poop everywhere!

Well, just like the walls inside the house, there were all sorts of gems in the grove. I’m serious. It’s pretty radical. This is a two-part blog post because of all the cool things I know about the house now, so be sure to stop back and see some of the most amazing things hiding in a block of trees.

I first started at the most southwestern corner. Here I was mainly picking up garbage. Pop bottles, beer bottles, plastic bags, even the rubber bottom of a shoe.

A Birdfeeder found in the grove.
A Birdfeeder found in the grove.

There were several down branches, so I chose my route carefully. I did not want to have a large branch fall on me while Tyler was gone.

Once I traversed to the far east side of the grove, things got a little weird.

For those of you who are not familiar with rural life, historically (and even today) people living out in the country do not have garbage pickup. There were (and are) generally two options for how to deal with waste. You either burn the waste or you bury it. Now, I don’t want anyone to be shocked by this (those of you living with many modern convinces in large communities), there are entire countries that control waste by burning it. And landfills where your garbage is sent? It’s basically the same concept as burying your waste in your yard. So, this isn’t some isolated rural or “hick” practice. (FYI)

There are yards and yards of this carpet sticking out everywhere! Peace and love y'all!
There are yards and yards of this carpet sticking out everywhere! Peace and love y’all!

I found the spot where garbage was buried. Based on the composition of what I found, the last time someone buried waste was likely the seventies. There was a suspiciously bright orange and green flower power carpet that spanned the WHOLE area, with pieces sticking out. As well as a blow-up mattress, and deconstructed pieces of a crappy desk.

This large steel barrel was just hanging out in the trees.
This large steel barrel was just hanging out in the trees.

Why did I find these things if they were buried, you ask? Well, over time, buried objects rise to the surface. Usually because they were shallowly buried. (I don’t think that sentence is grammatically correct, but right now I just don’t care). If you remember, while watering the garden one day, I uncovered an entire metal rake that had made it’s way to the surface about five feet from the garden. It had probably been buried for thirty years or more. I’m sure physics teaches us something about buried items rising to the surface (and probably dictates how caskets are buried and their weight), but I don’t know know that much about science and math applications in practical matters.

IMG_2356

Some items, people didn’t even bother to bury. Like this chair. Which probably weighed twenty pounds and you could only sit on if your butt was fifteen inches wide. Or this crutch, shown leaning against the chair. I’m pretty sure the people who lived here made the crutch. Or this Tim Burton looking bird house.

The lower left-hand corner of this picture is the weird bird house. I'm hoping a child made this as a gift...
The lower left-hand corner of this picture is the weird bird house. I’m hoping a child made this as a gift…

Creepy.

But this is a mere taste of what is buried/sitting in the grove.

Next time, I’ll show you the oldest section. The place where trees have grown through the middle of iron and finds that date back to the turn of the century.

 

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