Four months ago I was making promises. I doubt that any of my readers were hanging on every word in hopes that I really would give an update on my Black Soldier Fly composter, or how much the park has been changing, or how many gray hairs were revealed the last time I went too long between colorings; but just in case…here goes.
From this moment forward, I reserve the right to vanish from the blogsphere between the months of November and February. Birthdays, holidays, travel and familial obligations take precedence over photographing and rambling on about the mundane and sometimes disgusting things that go on around here.
That being said, let us get on with the business of catching up. Forget about time lines. Forget about the rotten cold winter that tried to kill most of our favorite stuff. We have arrived in mid February, where the sun is beaming, the doors and windows are open and the birds are insanely upbeat.
Things are great around here. One of the greatest things is that we don’t expect to be “around here” for much longer. Not that we don’t love the place, and we certainly don’t want to jinx it. So suffice to say that we expect our surroundings to change very soon. As it stands, they have already changed dramatically. So much so, that I am now quite proud to announce that we live in Breezeway Trailer Park. If you are a new reader who has Googled your way to this page, please keep in mind that most everything about this park has taken a dramatic turn for the better over the last few months. Have a look around and see for yourself.
Remember Jack, the junk hoarder in our back yard? Sadly, he was injured and had to go to a nursing home. Once his belongings were removed, the park owners cleaned up the lot and created a parking space made of crushed asphalt. The bean screen that I had built to block the chaos had finally given up the ghost; and since the view has drastically improved, we elected to remove it.
Since the cleanup, the lots along “The Back 40” have been much more active. Jack’s old lot is reserved, and the others are currently filled. We have some really great neighbors back there, including Lee and Linda, who are also avid gardeners.
Did you notice some barrels and PVC going on? Well, in the event that you have some unusual fascination with 55 gallon barrels, and the various uses thereof, let me indulge you. When it rains, the roof of the RV puts off more water than you can shake a stick at (or a PVC pipe, for that matter). I can’t be bothered to look up the actual climate zone of Micco, Florida, but my best guess is “Tropical Desert”. Every time it threatens to rain (and it rains a lot in the surrounding areas), the storm seems to split off and leave us high and dry, like a thirsty party goer who has waited in line for 20 minutes only to find that the keg is dry. When we do get precipitation, it is usually fast and furious; so we try to make the best of it.
We picked up some 55 gallon barrels and AJ did his engineering magic by attaching drainage tubes from the roof to direct rainwater and air conditioner condensation into these storage containers. They are raised up on concrete blocks, with handy spigots at the bottom attached to hoses.
We now have a nice irrigation supplement, which mitigates the need to tap into the park’s potable water supply.
In downloading photos from the camera, I even found this shot that AJ took of the water pressure provided by the rain barrels. I just adore how he documents his projects!
Oh, and remember my project, the Black Soldier Fly/worm composter? Here it is today. As it turns out, I didn’t have enough PVC/engineering skill to build a stable design. Once it had some weight to it, the whole thing started to lean at a dangerous angle. Things that lean can be unsettling, but things full of putrid, decomposing food and crawly maggots are downright scary. Being the innovator that I am, I came to the ingenious solution of letting it lean into the shed. I also hung a spare piece of lattice on the thing to disguise it from the front. I didn’t ask permission to erect this eyesore; but (fortunately) the park owners are green-minded, and actually contribute their own kitchen scraps to the cause.
Now that it is warming up, I shall be picking up a batch of composting worms to get busy in the bottom section of the contraption. I will then post another update (whether you like it or not!)
If you think that the back is an improvement, take a look at the front. The two ratty trailers across the road were demolished and replaced with crushed asphalt and sod to create very nice RV lots. The spots were quickly filled by a group of very cool snowbirds from Michigan, who chatter in delightfully nasal voices and fill their days with fishing and metal detecting.
We have new neighbors next door, too. They are younger (our age), with two dogs and a passion for gardening and good food. See that gray car in the foreground? Stick around for the next post, and I’ll tell you about that!