When it comes to fencing, I’m better at some jobs than others. I’m fairly adept at placing the post-pounder into just the right spot. I’m getting better at pounding in miles of staples because there was only one direction for me to go as I couldn’t really get any worse. Mending fences however, is not my forte. I can (sort of) get the job done but it’s not very pretty and the wire may not be especially tight. The cattle are courteous and respect the fix but we all know that it doesn’t meet my husband’s exacting fence-fixing standards.
So it struck me a bit odd when my Other Half said he had a special fencing project that he needed help with and I was the best one for the job. Stranger still, he elaborated that we didn’t need a pounder, or even staples or wire, but I had better bring my swimming togs. Normally when you’re spending the day fixing fence, you want less skin exposed, not more, so I was obviously growing more doubtful about this project with every detail that was divulged. In hindsight, he maybe should have told me to pack a pleasant attitude too.
Earlier this spring, we constructed some new fences and there were a couple of wetland areas that hadn’t been secured yet. We needed to wade into the water, install some anchors, and affix the wire to the under-water anchors. My husband couldn’t think of a better way to enjoy some quality time with his favourite wife than wading through the cattails, swatting mosquitos. He added that other couples were likely enjoying a refreshing dip in their local waterholes over the long weekend too and there was no reason we shouldn’t either.
We had a few jobs to do together that day. Around mid-day when the water was sure to be nice and warm (i.e. stagnant and malodorous), we headed to our destination, parked the truck, stripped down to our swimwear and entered the water. Usually with tasks of this nature, there is no shortage of traffic driving by at exactly the wrong moment but in our case, we were pretty lucky. There were no additional bystanders except for our herd of curious bred heifers that kept circling back to inspect our work, perplexed.
I experienced a few benefits from our fencing excursion. I’ve done some work assessing wetlands in the past, but never from within the wetland so I finally had the opportunity to experience sediment trapping first hand with the squishy, squelchy mud. Also, I had the opportunity to pull a few old posts out of the fence line that I’ve always wanted to retrieve but never had the chance. And of course I was reminded that I should always be at least somewhat skeptical of my Other Half when he invites me on an adventure.
Sometimes there is no way around a situation other than literally getting your feet wet. When you can’t go over it, and you can’t go under it, you’re left with just one option – you have to go right through it.