Thursday, January 10, 2008

Digging Holes

One day I was listening to a program on MPR where the guest was talking about he loved to dig holes in the yard when he was a little boy. In fact, he loved to dig so much that his dad had him dig a hole big enough to bury an old family car. (That is one big hole for a small boy to dig!) Many years later, he went back to his old neighborhood in LA to talk to the owners of his childhood home. Turns out, they had discovered the buried car in the back yard. They were able to sell it as an antique as it was in near-mint condition.

I thought about this buried car as we got the news from the excavator that they encountered bad soils. By the time the news got to me, the message was “construction debris was found”. This was just a classic example of what happens in the game “telephone’ where the message gets distorted the more times it’s repeated, as it wasn’t debris or even a car that they found. It was just mucky, yucky, loose clay.
The excavator had to dig out all the bad soils, so there is quite a big pile of dirt in the yard- almost big enough for a couple of old Chevys….. or at least a basement. We were planning just a crawl space but when this amount of excavation had to happen, we took a look at adding a basement. Because of the location of this space on the other side of the utility room, this space would never become more than storage or another utility-type space. (We are trying to not go overboard with storage space that will just get filled with more & more stuff). We would also have to enlarge foundation walls and add another slab. (We are trying to reduce the budget at the moment, so another add would be painful). So, no basement it is - we've ended up filling that big hole back up with compacted sand fill - dig a hole and fill it up! It's a great way to spend $8,000. We will of course keep the crawl space. It's a good place for Kevin and the kids to practice their Spiderman exercises.

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