After we moved in to our late mother’s house and most things have taken their new placs including in the boxes, it was time to attend to the lawn and garden; our late mother’s passion. It so happen that it is also wifey’s passion.
The berm form a separation between the earth’s lawn and the floor. Earth and sand tend to over spill onto the floor, requiring daily sweeping. Wife wanted to cement the whole lawn but I would not hear of it. It is a non-negotiable trait. I want an earth lawn even is it is just the width of a monkey’s step (sekangkang kera).
My proposal was to increase the berm width but not with concrete. I did not want hard concrete to dominate the small space we have for our garden. So I proposed to increase the width of the existing berm and cover it with rounded pebbles. I need unused cement (1 bag is too much), some sand and pebbles. The pebbles were easy enough to get from garden shops around the town.
THE PEBBLES BERM
I started with excavating the trench to form the base of the widened berm. The ground was fill with roots of the mango tree and manual excavation was energy sapping and muscles stressing. I endured it, thinking of the countless times I was supervising construction and very strict on the workers following the Works Specification. However when the labourer supervised by you is your own self, you started measuring compliance in terms of patience and perseverance. I was quite lacking in the first. So, I did let some tough roots stayed there.
Next step was concreting. I had manage to get half a bag of cement from the previous work and a heap of sand. The cement was still good. The sand however was mixed with dried leaves and cat shits. So I had to be careful to only scoop good sand. If done properly, I need to use steel mesh filters to get the proper grading of sand. I did not have the apparatus. So, what the heck, I just have to use eye judgement only. Mixing of cement, sand and water was also done ‘agak-agak’ with the intention of getting good, workable concrete. Stiff concrete mix would be too energy sappy to mix manually.
It was noon when I managed to complete concreting. Compaction was by the back of my digging tool. I need to let about 2 hours before the concrete get hardened. The berm looked beautiful and ready to receive the pebbles. This was the ending part.
Hey there… Does it not look good??