Friday, June 17, 2011

Officially Summer is here!

Back some 35 years ago - when I lived out on the island, life was much slower, much more back to the earth.  It was - after all - mostly a farming community - with some summer homes, and with some new housing developments going in.  (Today there are hardly any farms or summer homes left - but I digress)

Back some 35 years ago I was the epitome of "Mother Earth".  I made everything possible from scratch - didn't buy any processed foods - grew as many veggies as I could during the summer and "put them up" for the winter months.  I walked to the shops.  I made my children's clothes.  I recycled - my god how I recycled - because they told us .........the powers who be ....... that we were destroying Mother Earth.  (remember now that was over 35 years ago)

Fast forward 35 years or so and I have come to my senses.  The powers who be are still predicting the end of the environment ......... and in my mind - nothing much has changed.  People have gotten back on the recycle bandwagon...... and preach recycle reuse reduce like it is some religious cult.  

Me .......... I sit back and remember how we used to recycle........

BUT a few summers ago I wanted to change my back patio from ugly cement to something a little more attractive and charming.  (yeah yeah - this all ties in - be patient)

W and I went to the garden center and this nice young (young being the operative word) chap showed me recycled patio stones - made from rubber from used tires.  He was quite excited about these recycled patio stones and sang their praises......... "they were lighter to carry and move than traditional patio stones - they were softer under foot cause they were after all made from rubber - recycled rubber - because they were rubber - recycled from tires - they could withstand Canadian winters - and the best part - I didn't have to do anything except plunk them down. "

So - despite their being twice the price of traditional patio stones (and yeah half the weight) I bought enough to do my lil patio.  I brought them home and yes just plunked them down........ and my lord they looked wonderful.  The pattern made them look like red brick - and both sides of my lil patio have brick privacy walls - so they matched and added an element of charm.  And they were softer to walk on than traditional patio stones.

About two springs later I noticed that the corners of each of those recycled rubber patio stones were curling up.  It was obvious they weren't doing so well through our Canadian winters.

W and I pulled them all up and went out and purchased some stinky smelly glue stuff.  We then glued them all back down.

Last spring I noticed that the corners were again starting to curl.  I ignored them.  

This spring I could no longer ignore the corners - because these recycled rubber patio stones had HEAVED .......... and were creating a mine field of possible trip and fall flat on your face areas.

Back to the hardware store I went.  Found another nice young chap - told him what I thought about recycled rubber patio stones and asked if he had something that would glue them down permanently - no more spring curls.......... no more heaving.

And of course he did.  Nothing recycled - and probably anything but good for the environment BUT he promised it would work.

I did of course - have to wait till it stopped raining.  I had to wait till all the recycled rubber patio stones had dried out (do you have any idea how long it takes rubber to dry out??!! recycled or otherwise!!)   

This week was finally the week when the stars all aligned the sun shone - the patio stones dried out and I got to glue them all back down again.  Now I did notice that something strange had happened - they seem to have warped - their nice square edges aren't so square any more...... so after I got them all glued down I noticed cracks between some of them........ I didn't much care - cause truthfully I am done - done like dinner - with recycled rubber tire patio stones.  IF this glue treatment doesn't work - next spring I am gonna hire someone to rip them all up and put down a nice new patio of traditional materials - that won't curl or heave or fade in the summer sun!!!

BUT .............. as I moved the patio furniture back outside - adjusted the red umbrella and opened it to it's full glory - I realized ............ 

IT'S OFFICAL - my secret garden is open - summer has arrived !!!



  1. I would say you should stay away from " nice young chaps " and stay with us old chaps..

  2. Ordalie9:16 am

    "preach recycle reuse reduce like it is some religious cult." How true!
    Nice young fanatical chaps are a pain in the ass!

  3. yup to both of you.....

    No more nice young chaps.. gonna stick with the old one I have .. thank you very much...

    AND if needs be hire someone who doesn't preach reuse recycle reduce and can lay down a decent patio floor !!!

  4. Shake your fist at the heavens and rage against the unkind gods that have visited such frustrations upon they innocent and undeserving head.

  5. lol @ Buffalo - y0u sound a wee bit like an old time preacher there Buff..

  6. There is always a bright side to everything! The patio slabs may be curling up but at least summer is officially there and you have a gorgeous red brolly to prove this!
    Excellent! all the best x

  7. Anonymous7:11 am

    Finding stuff to withstand the Canada winter must be very difficult! It is pretty impossible to find such here in Maine! We have a bunch of projects to do and now I'm gonna stay right away from recycled material!


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