I thought we were finished with this after last summer. After all, he gave me his solemn promise that it wouldn’t happen this year. But suddenly it’s all started again — the mysterious phone calls, the emails from strangers, the promises to meet just before dark or early in the morning, the unknown vehicles pulling in and out of our yard at all hours. I’ve had to face the facts: my husband has once again given in to his obsession with dirt.
Thar she blows!
His dirt mania first flared up last summer, when he decided to cover up an old retaining wall on our hillside. First it was just a neighbor bringing wheelbarrows of dirt he’d excavated from his basement. But it didn’t take long for my husband to discover that that he could use Craigslist to get other people to bring him more dirt. A lot more dirt.
The new arrivals graduated from wheelbarrows to pickups with piles of dirt in the back. Then dump trucks with three or four cubic yards each. Then the giant 10-wheelers that chewed our brand-new lawn to shreds and poured mountains of dirt down our hillside. Hundreds of cubic yards of new dirt. Our yard is now about 10 feet wider than it was a few weeks ago. This is not an exaggeration.
And in case you were wondering, dirt can’t just be allowed to lie around once it arrives. Oh, no! It has to be watered (yes, watered, to make it consolidate) and pushed in all directions by a bobcat loader. I actually think that the whole project is an excuse for my husband to have a bobcat on the property.
Now he’s talking about what kind of tractor we need to get to drive around on the road he’s building to the bottom acre of our hillside.
The love object:
Those of you who know me well might think that all this dirt moving could be just a trifle… annoying. But the truth is, I wouldn’t trade my husband’s obsessions for anything. His projects give me some of my best dinner-table stories. And if it weren’t for him, nothing at all would ever get done around here. I’m glad I married an engineer.