… and I should like to fix it. (That’s a phrase straight out of a 1970’s Hungarian/English phrase book; in the Socialising/Dating section). But sadly, I don’t know how. I have tried. I asked Reg (his real name) to fetch his implausibly big digger and help me. He dumped a huge digger bucket of wet clay on what we thought was the site of the leak. It’s great being able to call on Reg. As long as the ground is firm enough to support the enormous weight of his almighty digger, he can trundle into the Priory grounds and scoop out mud and oozy stinky stuff from the pond margins and ditches. He can take away piles of waste soil (a by-product of having loads of new brick paving laid) and spread it on Margaret’s fields. He can even dig new ditches – and has. It’s like having a huge Tonka toy to play with. Or having a hotline to International Rescue (Gardening Division).
And he can dump great dollops of wet clay on a suspected pond-leak – but it didn’t work.
What we thought was the site of the leak wasn’t – the west pond still leaks. Luckily the leak is quite high up on the bank (somewhere) so it only takes the water level down to a certain level (see above photo) and doesn’t empty it completely. Still, it takes it lower than I would like. And that means that after a prolonged dry period, like we’ve just had, it falls really low – like this:
|The lowest water level I’ve seen in the west pond.|
Not so much a pond then as a sludge. The West Sludge. Still, I should be able to get over to the island without having to tug on my waders. “Soon, I will pull on my wellington boots and strim my island.” That’s in the phrase book too.
It is, undoubtedly, curmudgeonly to wish for rain but – I wish for rain. There I’ve said it. A lot of rain. I need days of rain. It is only after a deluge that water pours into the Priory gardens from the surrounding fields. Only when those fields are saturated does water pour into the east pond, and then, when that’s full, it pours into the ditch and then it pours into the west pond – until it’s brimming. It will be really, really full for a while and I shall be pleased. But, it will start to seep away again because my pond leaks and I should like to fix it.