On Patrol with the Downtown Marigold Project
by Bobby Blair 6/24/12
Milk crate #37 in front of St. Mary's becomes the first casualty of 2012 growing season.
Preparedness and foresight are not one of my virtues. For whatever reason last week I ordered two 12 volt water pumps from a company in Minnesota. Delivery time 5-7 days. The older pump on my water wagon was beginning to show its age. During peak season when it's hot the flowers along the sidewalks and hanging plants throughout town must be watered every other day --- no exceptions, no vacations, and no skipping because it just rained half an inch.
This year my every other day watering route for the Downtown Marigold Project has been reconfigured to take into account the eating habits of those visiting Bertucci's, those attending Saturday Masses at St. Mary's, Tuesday night concerts at Goodwill Park, and the unannounced occasional wedding reception in upstairs town hall. Murphy's Law (anything that can go wrong will go wrong and often does) reared its ugly head this week on the Downtown Marigold Project water patrol.
The first milk crate to bite the dust this season was in front of St. Mary's Church. It would appear that someone simply ran over the crate (on the sidewalk, mind you). I have yet to hear a confession from this "hit and run" incident. If the guilty party is reading this, forget the five Hail Marys and two Acts of Contrition. Your penance of a 12 pack of 16 oz. liquid miracle grow bottles left on my side porch will suffice. The occupants of milk crate #37 petunias, marigolds, and a single canna all survived and were transferred to milk crate #53. The carnage of the incident is shown below.
Not long after spotting the ruined milk crate, I spotted Father Mark of St, Mary's who asked me how the flowers were growing. It being the hottest day of the year I asked Father, do you think a little holy water would help? The powers above may not have been amused, as minutes later my water pump stopped working.
With darkness closing in there would be little I could do till morning. A trip to Granger Supply in Framingham in the morning would produce a new pump. The unwatered plants downtown faced with another day of 90 degrees were in the danger zone of going kaput. A trip to the Highway Department. I sought out highway worker Glenn Carlsen. Glenn had in the past saved the plants uptown numerous times. Glenn suggested reconfiguring the system by having the outflow hoses attached to the shutoff valve rather than drawing up and over the entire tank. It worked, and the old pump came to life.
Watering at mid-morning with cars parked everywhere would be a task, but time was of the essence. Watering completed, I arrived home to find UPS had delivered two new pumps ordered earlier in the week. Well supplied with three new pumps I had to wonder, sometimes it never rains but it pours.
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