Sisyphus Revamped

We did it! A few days behind schedule, but the second wall is complete. It was perfect timing as the weather here is steadily getting hotter, and making it more and more difficult to work outside past 8 am. It was a fantastic and exhausting sense of victory as we filled the last tall cage in our second long wall.

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The first 5 sections were short, making the whole process on those sections quick and easy. As I mentioned before, we could literally dump the rock in and move on..well we had to add some bracing wires, but very quick and easy to fill the first 5 sections.

The next two sections were a little more awkward. They are very tall, and it is impossible to get your arm down to the bottom to easily adjust rocks where there are holes. We ended up having to use our fingers like chopsticks between the two types of fencing material, and maneuvering the rocks into place. I am not sure if anyone has ever tried lifting baseball size rocks with chopsticks, but you can imagine the awkwardness and multiple attempts that we had to deal with. The process became, dump rocks, pinch between finger between the wire, struggle to get the rock to sit right, back fill behind it and repeat. On the odd occasion we were able to give the wire & rocks light kicks to jostle them into place.

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Tying the wire was also more of a challenge with these two sections because the wire would bend as we tried to poke it through the landscaping fabric at the back. We managed though and figured out different techniques to get our fingers in far enough to brace the bendy wire while we skewered it through the fabric at the back. It was some serious teamwork. There have been times that either K or I will fill sections on our own. These two sections would have been near impossible to do by ourselves due to the the height of them.

All of the above being said, this was still the easiest wall so far, despite the few minor struggles. We managed to get both sections filled in about 2 hours, and that included trying to sift through the new rock that was delivered. It is not a very good batch and has a lot of small rocks considering it is supposed to be 2″ – 4″ rock. I think the supplier knew that it was not a good mix, because the delivery driver told us he gave us an extra half a scoop because there was dirt in it. Oh well, we will pile the smaller stuff that doesn’t work in the wall into a separate pile and use that in the front garden bed next year. Right now, we have lots of upcoming projects that we can use various sizes of rock, so it will all find a home.

Basil fastidiously supervised all of our work, making sure to be close to where we working at all times. The heat however made our lazy hound sleepy, so she ended up snoring most of the time. Ellie continued her perimeter checks to ensure that we were safe while working. It is always nice to have them hanging out with us while we build our dream yard. With minimal wounds and blood…yes we managed to slice and dice our arms a little on the sharp metal ends, which resulted in a little blood…we managed to finish off the wall just before the heat really hit.

Now I have to get back in the shop and start building the caps that will go on the top of the new rock wall, giving the wall a finished look.

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