Tannic acid. What makes the slow moving Edisto river waters murky/black and a symbol of equally slow southern living is also making the deck around my pool a mess. Above, the area under the blue line undulating like the Edisto behaves in the low country of South Carolina, was grouted only two days ago. Above the line to the left, today. Today, that grout is clean. Wait until tomorrow.
To be sure, my aesthetic is shabby. I do not expect perfection. Our house is a 1940’s farm house, mostly tongue and groove, and many planes meet other planes in a happy approximate way. It is filled with stuff from that decade and the next; my pocketbook can only afford these precious items that have a “history”—a history of being well used! We all have our bumps and bruises.
But I will tell you what. We have had a summer to remember down here. Today is the first day we have had zero chance of rain since the middle of the spring. Might have been the beginning of spring. My head is swimming.
Don’t even know how to describe how wet this spring/summer has been. Wilting, humid, dirty-feeling, wet-feeling, doing things outside in the rain because it just will not stop, crinkly body parts, fungus, mold, unrelenting, opposing optimism, ponds in places they do not belong, mosquitoes where they were not before, wet paper, wet bedclothes, wet wet wet.
I poured bleach on this black mold already where the bricks offset the old entrance to the studio. Dangerous stuff. You can see how it is still an issue. And then there is mildew.
I have heard about mildew in old television commercials. Saw it years ago on old cheap shower curtains. It was the old experience of mildew that made me decades ago declare that a shower curtain would never darken my door again, and ten years ago realize that showers did not need coverings anyway. Of any kind.
But I never saw mildew as a kind of indoor snow before. Inexperienced, this is what we did. Happily living here without air conditioning in the big house for many years now., we invested in a whole house attic fan. And Glenn had some kind of a system added with our recent construction to pull hot air out of our steep attic. Both things helped, kind of.
Man did that fan pull the cool air out of the woods and into the house! It was wonderful! And this has not been a hot summer for us, just wet. We would watch the indoor/outdoor thermometer and when temps equalized in the morning, we shut the house up and turned on the dehumidifier. It worked! Everything was tolerable until I found the white snow. First on a fine old hand made table with a marquetry top, which had some varnish problems anyway. Guess I kind of generalized the two problems together. Head in sand.
But then I saw snow on the side of the dresser, and looking closer, everywhere. Battle stations! And the end of a certain way of life. My weakness makes me sick. Do you know what pushed me over to the other side? Ringworm. I got a fungus this wet, wet summer on my ankle.
Good bye to this part of green living.
The other side of the pool deck has no damage from oak trees plus water. Around it are hollies, papyrus, acuba plants. Watch, next year we will be complaining about something else.