Monday, 19 July 2010

Was it worth it?

<rant>This is how the pond looked last summer, after I'd dismantled the cascade and failed to put it together again. The rocks, particularly the grooved one at the bottom of the cascade, were just too heavy for me to work with and I was worried I'd injure my back again.
The firm I hired to fix it for me didn't plan to start until November, but then their timetable slipped due to poor weather. Eventually, in March, they gave me a firm start date, so we emptied the pond, storing fish and weed
in a couple of big green trugs. We had to puncture the liner because even a centimetre of water was enough to encourage frogs to lay their eggs.

After much procrastinating, the people I'd hired finally admitted they
would not be able to get around to our job for ages, so I fired them.

Back on Which? Local I found another firm. Nice man came around to check out the job, but then phoned later to say he'd not be able to do it for ages, and recommended
some other folks.

Other folks duly quoted, warned of a 6 week delay before they could start, but finally did actually start within a couple of weeks of when they said they would.
Sadly, they didn't do what I asked them to. Right from the start, I'd said "water over the top rock, into a pool, over the grooved rock from the original cascade and into the pond." I discussed this endlessly with them. I pointed out that the top rock feeding the water into the pool did not have to align directly with the groove in the bottom rock but could be offset. I had in mind a long, narrow pool by then. Did I get that? I did not.

I came home the other Friday lunchtime to find them setting the cascade into cement. They'd drilled a hole in the top rock (OK, that's close enough) but then there was just a narrow channel leading to the grooved rock. He did not want to make me a pool, but eventually I persuaded him to rotate the two flattish rocks defining his channel so the back end is about 10cm wide and he deepened it a bit so you do get a micro-pool.

The original rock is limestone pavement from back in the days when we didn't know any better, so we looked the other way and asked him to buy some more to make up enough of a rockery to satisfy his artistic requirements. Did he buy nicely rounded, water-worn rock? Mostly not. Some is good, but a lot is not what I'd have chosen.

And just to piss me off entirely, they broke my low-voltage path lights and trampled all over flowerbeds, crushing the plants and just ruining things. Bastards! I don't think I'll say anything to them because I doubt if I could say anything polite.


No comments: