Moving Slowly

The garbage truck came by this morning, awakening us with their growling truck engines and banging and klanging alarm – and so we had another opportunity to load flat items into the dumpster without disturbing our neighbors’ garbage-needs. I really think Brigid would have phrased that sentiment entirely differently (if at all), with an elegiac tone and in hushed and clear nuggets of memory – but how well do we really know our garbage-men and their hidden lives? I know Phil would really be the best resource for interpreting that. So with the parking area quiet and most vehicles gone-to-work, into the dumpster went the de-constructed Ikea press-board cabinet returned to all it’s flat-packed’ness – and the maple veneer shelves too. Heavy with press-board glue-weight and yet fragile to moisture, they should decay quickly in the landfill.
On the garage floor stand two tiers of packed bankers-boxes, arranged on the blue tarp that simulates the truck-bed so we know what will fit, they are anchored at the end by the bed-extender/ramp – the load-up is framed and ready. But there is always the hectic disarray and an element of puzzle making, of the tumbling squares of Tetris in-loading variety. Which ones go where, which ones contain fragile items, which should be turned sideways. In the end all will be covered by a tarp and then that secured by a cargo net, cinched tight at the bottom left corner.
Meanwhile, upstairs un-covered walls give-way and open up to reveal more space. Walls where shelves stood proud will need re-painting and hole-filling. Walls with many tiny holes where angle-irons and lag-screw anchored cabinets and credenzas against this tremulous earth, and pictures hung.   Here we are in the jelly-belly of earthquake country, lying along the San Andrea Fault’s rift-valley. To the north a few miles is a large double-lake reservoir containing many millions of gallons of water, so many they are measured in cubic yards instead of gallons, or in metric tonnes, or in thousands of acre-feet (57,910 acre·ft to be exactly Wiki). Recent infrastructure work has been completed at monstrous cost and with gigantic and deep underground water-tunnels4,200 feet long and hold(ing) a 96-inch steel pipe as liner, to feed the thirsty hipsters of San Francisco – work long overdue in the shadow of a restless, tumbling coast where cliffs fall into the ocean. It is a water-system built 100-years ago by a man who had first built tunnels through the mountains of Hawaii so that water from wet jungle valleys could irrigate the dry ones, and sugar could grow. Those Hawaiian tunnels were dug and chipped out of volcanic rock by foreign laborers, some of whom had fought in the first Russo-Japanese war and left their mark of gratitude to the Emperor on the tunnel walls.
We are going-away from all that which one day in the distant future will be a small archipelago or sound, open to the ocean, where future boaters will raise sails to travel around small islets of former hills, and where the extended network of towns and cities and High Speed Rail – civilized marvels of engineering – will lie sunken below the green water. To the south at the mountains edge there is already a town sunken below the waters of another reservoir. Occasionally when the drought is upon us and the water level descends below capacity, one can walk among the old stones of its lost buildings, and see a bridge that bears a date of origin, before the entombment in water. Bon Voyage – but not quite yet. This is just the fifth of probably as many more trips.

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About NotClauswitz

The semi-sprawling adventures of a culturally hegemonic former flat-lander and anti-idiotarian individualist, fleeing the toxic cultural smug emitted by self-satisfied lotus-eating low-land Tesla-driving floppy-hat wearing lizadroid-Leftbat Califorganic eco-tofuistas ~

5 thoughts on “Moving Slowly

  1. Good planning on actually figuring out HOW to pack the truck… I’m amazed at some of the ‘crap’ I see rolling down the road as a quickly move over three lanes… sigh

  2. Pingback: Space and Absence | Daily Pundit

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