Because yesterday was supposed to be the last day of rain for awhile, I decided to pump water into the barrels at the back of the yard. We not only have a large rain barrel that collects from the roof, but several huge barrels at the back of the yard to store rainwater for the garden. When I went outside it started to rain heavily. I started to pump and then watched the rain sluice into the rain barrel.
Bad idea 1: Trying to measure how much rain comes off the roof. I put a 12 litre bucket under the rain pipe, looked at my watch, and in 28 seconds the bucket was full! Cool! Being the scientific sort, I decided to measure once more so I removed the bucket and in the process knocked the bottom two metres of drainpipe off the house into the basement window well, which is about 4 and a half feet deep.
Bad idea 2: Climbing down the window well. Leaving the drain pipe in the window well is not an option, because the water is running down the house – as I now know – at a rate of almost 26 litres a minute. So, I very carefully ease myself down into the window well and rescue the drainpipe. Unfortunately, there is no one there to rescue me. I end up trying various different techniques and finally end up getting out of the well without damaging the window or myself.
Bad idea 3: Trying to re-attach the drain pipe while it is raining. Because I actually do have some knowledge about assessing mould and remediating mould-damaged buildings, the thought of water damage fills me with terror. So I try to reattach the drainpipe to the house, at a point which is waaay above my head. I stand on a chair and try to attach the drainpipe using the existing hardware (two screws and a wire holding the drainpipe to the wall) and the water is flowing (at a rate of 25 litres a minute) down into the sleeves of my gortex jacket and down my body and into my shoes. I feel it IN my shoes.
The pipe won’t stay in place by itself. I run and get a piece of plywood to lean against the house to divert some of the water. That only solves half the problem, because a lot of water is still flowing down the stucco into the window well. So I run back to the recently cleaned and tidy storage room and grab an old tarp from the piles of folded tarps (big thank you to The Man for that…) and use that to divert the water off the house into the yard.
After it is all over, I went in through the garage and the water just RAN off me and made a big puddle on the floor. When it stopped raining, The Man went outside and reattached the drain pipe. He also added a few additional supports that will prevent me from doing any kind of future “water quantification” experiments.
And finally: When I told my son about this at dinner, he looked at me funny and asked if I had noticed the bricks in the bottom of the window well. I said “no…” Apparently he has gotten stuck in the window well more than once, when he has gone down to retrieve balls or has been playing hide and seek. As a result, he put a few bricks in the window well to prevent him from being stuck….I didn’t even notice them.
The forecast for the next few days: