The septic tank cleaner guy is here. As if a long August weekend wasn’t excitement enough.

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Can’t believe it’s been five years since the last tank enema, but considering we run the dishwasher almost every day, in addition to showers, hand washing, toilet flushing and laundry, I guess the thing does fill up.

Last time, Hub (always the engineer) marked the relevant distances and depths and had an archeological-type map ready when it came time to shovel the dirt from the lid.

Hell of a time to get it done, though, because of watering bans and the grass – always sparse over that large cement square, won’t recover until the fall because it’s too damned hot for re-seeding.

It’s an unusual job and I’m sure no one in high school puts in their yearbook profile that they want to operate a pooper-scooper truck.

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Thank goodness someone does it, though. Our guy today is a firefighter – guess this secondary activity is lucrative. And talk about mixing your genres of employment activity!

The job took about 15 minutes, but he was talkative and showed us how the thing works. Thank goodness it’s a simple structure – a large cement box about six feet deep, 18″ below ground, with a thick cement lid and a black plastic tube the effluent from the house flows into.

I warned Hub about peering too closely to take pictures. Much as I love the man, if he fell in, I’d throw him the garden hose because I would not be going in after him.

Once the tank was empty, everything got hosed down and the lid resealed.

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Growing up on a farm with no indoor toilet, we got used to outdoor privies, winter and summer. You learned not to linger because there were always flying/biting things after your tender butt cheeks. And in the summer, the smell, oh, the smell.

I remember my mother tossing in boxes of something called chloride of line – I think that’s the same stuff murderers throw over bodies in shallow graves to speed decomposition. Now why the hell do I know that? Guess it’s my writer’s brain at work.

I was curious about where the shit goes at the end of the day. Apparently, part of the huge dumpage fees in the bill is to cover the cost for the Town of Innisfil to put the stuff through the water treatment plant. Now where the treated fluid ends up does not bear thinking about.


Oh well.