Monday, July 6, 2009

Bulldozer dreams

In several posts in April of this year I told about burning several large piles of brush and stumps where I had cleared the land for the vegetable garden. The piles burned for more than two weeks leaving large deposits of charcoal and about a dozen mud-caked stumps.

The only good way to dispose of stumps is to bury them, so I had a bulldozer come in on July 3 for the burial. The operator dug out a hole about 10-feet deep and 75-feet long. He pushed the stumps and charcoal-impregnated dirt into the hole and covered it with top soil (see photo above). While he was at it, he changed the drainage routes around the garden and re-cut some roads going to the top of my property.

I watched him all day. Seeing my intense interest, he asked if I would like to take a couple of passes on his Caterpillar D4 bulldozer. I thought he would never ask. I only made a few backward and forward runs with it, but it fulfilled a longtime wish of mine. I've always wanted to run a piece of heavy equipment like that.

In my younger days I used to have dreams of running a bulldozer. Often the bulldozer would lift off the ground and I would be flying on it. Dr. Freud will have to explain that one.

This real bulldozer stayed firmly on the ground. I was surprised to learn that a bulldozer has no clutch and that it does backward faster than it goes forward. When I got back on my tractor is was like driving a plastic toy pedal car. Everyone needs to drive a bulldozer once in their life.

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