The Disappearing Urn

This was how the urn sat after the first reset.

Many of you that have followed my blog over the years are well acquainted with the urn that stands in the middle of the 5000 gallon pond next to the deck and has done from the very beginning 30 odd years ago. I purchased it for this pond which is the first pond that I built, way back when and it has lasted all of this time. To be fair, it has no moving parts and therefore nothing to wear out unless you count the water that flows out of the top which is of course, moving. You can read about a previous write up of the urn here.

A few weeks ago, I had reason to get in the pond to do some cleaning so at the same time, I repositioned the urn back onto the concrete block base on which it stands. You can read about that here. Everything was working just fine for a couple of weeks until two days ago when I happened to notice that the urn was missing….again. I scrolled back through the recordings that the camera situated up on the deck railing had captured and found where it had fallen over again following the attention of the big fish. I had noticed over the past few days that it was developing a bit of a lean and should have acted sooner to correct that problem but did not relish having to get back into the pond to do the work. Now, through my own procrastination, I have got to do it anyway.

Watch the urn falling over. (In the first 30 seconds).

It has been warming up here in central Texas with the temperatures going into the low 90’s and summer heat is not far away. For me, it gets harder and harder to work outside when it is very hot so I tend to try to get any work that needs doing to early mornings. Those of you that follow my blogs know that I am very averse to early rising which leads me into a bit of a quandry. Yesterday, I decided to bite the bullet and get out there and do some work in the storage area that contains the compost pile. It needed cleaning up and the piles of leaves and plants that I had dumped in front of it in bursts of previous activity, needed loading onto this giant pile of garden refuse. The theory is that as the material decays over time, it will make very good mulch for the garden and over the 30 odd years that the pile has been in existence, this has proved to be the case. On my walks with the dogs, I see bags and bags of leaves and garden refuse that my neighbors put out for the trashman to pick up and at the same time, watch those same people go out and buy bags of mulch to put on their gardens. Go figure.

I decided that it was already too hot to continue with the outside heavy work and it occurred to me that I should reset the urn. After all, I had to physically get in the pond to do this and what cooler place than in the water along with the fishies. As this was the third time of resetting this urn, I was getting an old hand at it and went about the task of rebuilding and rearranging the blocks and stones that I used for the base. I chose to set it in a little deeper in the hope that it would survive any fish attacks in the future. What I really need to do is lower the water level and to do the job right, would need to take out at least 3000 gallons. I really don’t want to do that for both monetary and wasting water reasons.

The rebuilt urn stand showing the platform for the turtles. Notice the urn is quite a bit deeper than the picture at the top of the page.

After completing the task of resetting the urn, I also decided to do a cleaning of as much of the winter debris of leaves and algae that I could and managed to get out quite a bit of the stuff before calling it a day. At the same time of rebuilding the base, I included a small platform for the turtles to use when they choose to sunbathe which, by the way, they do at every opportunity, usually on the sides of the pond.

Hopefully, we have solved one problem but I would not be a bit surprised if one of these times in the future as I am checking, I will discover that once more, the urn has disappeared.

Written 5/25/2020