Monday, November 29, 2010

The Watering Hole - กระพัง

Brought to you courtesy of Matt's dreams. Well, where to start!? I rent a house, but despite this fact, one day, I began to dig. The green lawn, somewhat of a rarity here, was broken. Worms surprised, I dug into it with the hoe. The first of what was to be many.

Slowly slowly catchy monkey as a great friend once said. Digging, as well as providing some serious physical exercise provides time to think. Autonomous processes, seem to have a habit of provoking introspection. The mind is occupied yet free to flow.

Digging and digging. Getting deeper, slowly but surely. Every little counts aye!? A little music helps.



The stream was changed yet again.. this time it's wider... The fish are tripping out! 



 At one point I had to build up the outer sides.. mud + water = fun! Literally mix the two and slap it on and wait for it to dry! A true sculptor! What a satisfying feeling to smooth it all out! I spent far too much time stroking and molding! Like caressing a fine.. err never mind..

The beautiful Lotus! One of my favorite flowers!

For two months the progress was gradual, very gradual. A little bit here a little bit there. After two months I had big hole in the garden. I sat many evenings starring at the blank hole trying to visualize what it was to be. I used breeze blocks and a little cement to raise the level.

May and Chris helped out with the cementing. May was a natural. A few hours later and the edges and central section of the watering hole had a rim. The main idea was to provide support and a higher edge to stop run-off from the surroundings into the pool.

Now for the underlay.. I needed something soft to stop the rocks punching holes through the outer liner. Like a true gypo I hunted and found old pieces of carpet and massage mats from the bins! Wow.. some of the looks I got doing it! But the end justifies the result.. right? A few minutes of looking like a sciv was all about one thing.. saving money and having a pool at the end of it! It really is amazing though what you can do with recycled stuff!

4000 Baht later.. I had acquired a liner.. 10 x 12 meters! Bloody expensive.. and hard to find. There was a thicker one for double the price but I figured that it is only a rented house.. how long do I want it to last for!? It turned out that the size was more than enough. (I suppose thats what you get for measuring things with your body length). Wow.. It took me at least half an hour to unwrap the bloody thing! 

Not too long later I had myself what looked like some sort of 'watering hole'. Time to turn on the taps! Ahh it doesn't leek.. yet! Brilliant! I have no pictures, but I was in there for several hours splashing about like the seven year old I feel like until it finally reached the top. (Three months of pure digging will do that to you!).

 Finished! Well.. with a few extra things to do. The boys are loving it! What boy wouldn't? They were one of my main drives behind it. The boys and me.. THE boy.

Needed some water circulation which should help keep the water clean. 

The water got a little dirty because I was too lazy to clean the rocks before I put them in the vegetative zone. 

 The boys, me and the misses enjoying the watering hole!


Quiet waters in the morning... 

Changed the stream a little more... 

A few more waterfalls that flow into a make shift filter with a mini home made water wheel. The old plant pot is filled with lava rock and sponges so it would filter the water.


And a bigger water wheel.. why not!

And recycling at its finest.. I years worth of beer bottle lids made a new table surface... 


That's it for now.. but there is sure more to come! Like ma mum said.. I have Fanshawe in my blood! 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Evolution of the Bath Tub - ต้องอาบน้ำ

While I was climbing about up some hills one day I spotted an old bath tub that someone had dumped. It was fine except for a broken hole where the overflow was. I figured that it would be easy enough to seal up, so the next day with the help of a friend we lugged it in the back of his truck and took it back to my place.

It began as an outside bath...


The kids loved it!

So did I!

HDR Photo...

 Later I dug and crafted a stream in the front garden and the bath became a pond. A few plants and a few fish later and the job was a good one. Eventually I moved it back behind the house to make way for my next slightly bigger project, building a plunge pool. 


I'm currently digging a massive hole in the garden to make way for my very own plunge pool. Its been a dream of mine for a while. So, one day I just started to dig and I'm still bloody digging. I could have got a digger in to do it for cheap here but I figured that I would get a nice workout from it. The eventual idea is to make a pool for under 10,000 Baht which is about 200 English quid. The pool will be natural, in that there will be no chlorine or salt. The idea is that plants in the water will act as the filter/regeneration zone and a few waterfalls will add oxygen. Whether this will work I'm not sure... We shall see. I know there are many other people curious to see if it will stay clean. I hope it does! If all goes wrong then I can always turn it into a big fish pond. Ahh experimenting and garden living! : )