the value of dirt

Most of the work on the pond was done but I still had this big pile of dirt.  I had used some of my dirt building up a low area on the south side of my house.  I used a little more building the terraces by my waterfall.  And my neighbor took a little to fix his own low lying area.  But it wasn’t enough and I still had a pile of dirt that I wasn’t sure what to do with.

I was pretty much resigned to having to pay someone to haul it away.  Sandy thought I should put up a ad for “free dirt” on craigslist to see if anyone would come get it.  I thought that was nuts… it wasn’t enough for any serious construction project… no one could possible want our pile.  Boy was I wrong!  We had one guy show up and take three-fourths of our pile for a patio he was building.  This was great, but the one downside was we still had dirt to get rid of and now our pile was really too small for anyone to bother with.  Or so I thought…
Another fellow called asking for dirt, I let him know we didn’t have much left and he still wanted to come.  He said he needed fill dirt for a flooding problem he was having (everybody floods around here!)  He showed up in a minivan and I wondered how he was planning on taking the dirt home.  He began pulling all of these 5 gallon buckets out of his car.  He had stacks and stacks of them.. maybe 30 or 40 total.  I filled the buckets and he would carry them, two at a time to his car, until we’d filled all the buckets.  When we’d filled up all the buckets, he drove home, emptied them, and came back for more.  After we filled his buckets a second time, our pile was gone.
I made one final trip to home depot for the season (right… that’s what I thought last time!) and returned with many bags of top soil, (hold your nose) manure, and mulch as well as three or four hundred bulbs (wow!  I can’t believe it was that many).  I started cutting away some of the excess liner and I saw something I couldn’t believe what I found…. I yelled for sandy to come quick and bring my camera (she’s such a good sport)… this time I found two salamanders…
After their photo session, I put the salamanders down on some wet rocks and watched them crawl to safety, hiding themselves in between the rocks.  Then I put the dirt, mulch, and bulbs into place and decided I was dirty enough to call it a day.

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