Rolling Rocks November 18, 2012


Who would have thought that one of my favorite activities would be rolling big rocks down a mountainside?  Over the course of the summer, we had work done to our gravel and dirt driveway.  There is a trench which runs alongside, and when it rains heavily, gravel leaks into the trench and in a tumult of water and gravel, runs downhill.  I've solved this by digging the trench out whenever downpours sluice in any torrential fashion, by making little barricades or swales, crosswise, and intermittently, and by lining the trench on the driveway side with stones I've rolled down the hillside.  The rocks themselves shine and glint with mica, and some of them are ruddy colored, from the red clay.  I love the mossy ones.  I've done the same thing up along the logging track, that runs east along the side of the mountain to the edge of our property.  Having spent 15 years in South Philly, where my "property," was the size of 3 picnic tables, fenced-in, and bowered with power and telelphone lines, it is still amazing to me that we actually live on this land.  My neighbors there thought "trees gave ants," meaning all trees were festering places for insects!  Periodic swales, or trenches, make cuts for the water to run horizontally off the logging track, so that we don't get a river of water coming straight down the track.  Erosion can be a problem here.  I get excited when I discover a culvert some previous owner put in under the logging track.  So I've lined the 5 swales with rocks and I love searching for the rocks, and lugging them uphill or down, always wearing gloves, of course, and come home with dirt in the pockets of my hooded sweatshirt, my bear spray can latched into a belt loop and bumping against my hip, as I walk.  The day the finger sections in my work gloves wore through I was thrilled.  I'm a cheap date in my camo overalls; I don't need to drink anythng but air. 


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