July's least welcome visitors were ants.
We discovered holes and piles of sawdust in the tops of one of our windowsills, and later in the stairwell where the wall is unfinished.
We have been battling them for about two weeks now, spraying poison (which I'm not fond of) and cleaning them up off our floor. It hasn't been massive hoards of them, but just enough of them - recently staggering about drunkenly in death throes - to set my skin crawling.
And the crunchy sound the make when you crush them.
No, worse, the crunchy FEEL of them as you squish them in a piece of toilet paper that is not half thick enough for the job.
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We've also been dealing with the frozen septic. The ground on the north side of a hill in Alaska stays frozen for a looooong time, and we found the problem when there was still snow on the ground, back in April.
We did set up a pretty good workaround - we had the septic tank pumped and continued flushing the toilet into it, but re-plumbed all the outlet lines for graywater into a holding tank in the basement which we could use a sump pump to disperse a few times a day as needed.
Graywater isn't as toxic as the stuff going down the toilet, but it can still get really gross. All the congealed fat and food particles from washing dishes. All the gross sweat and hairs from your showers. Things you wash your hands to get rid of. Soap scum. Everything you find in the trap of your sink when you're forced to clean it out, all squished up in an unidentifiable smear the consistency of soft butter.
So you take a nice layer of that, all over the inside surface of your graywater bucket, and the lines that go down into it, and you let it sit in a nice warm, moist environment for three months.
That, my dears, is what I got to clean up today as we plumbed our sinks and shower back into the septic system. I was up to my biceps in that bucket with a long-handed brush, scrubbing it off the sides and holding my breath. I had to take apart the sump pump to remove the world's nastiest hairball - this wiry lump infused with grease and last week's gravy residue.
This activity used up all of my hot water, so my badly-needed shower afterwards was in disappointingly lukewarm water.
ETA: Also, once we had finished all of this, we turned around and reconnected all of it, because the laundry water was backing up into our basement. HORRAY.
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And last, but not least, we played 'what's that SMELL' in the front yard and discovered a bucket of water in my garden filled with fetid water and several hundred drowned, rotting ladybug larvae.
Brownie points if you can read this post without immediately taking a shower.
Originally posted at Dreamwidth: https://ellenmillion.dreamwidth.org/1630576.html