We've been getting more and more warm days and even had a couple days in a row with the temperature not dropping below freezing, which implied it was time to start getting the yard ready for spring and summer. The bigger problem here was the pond. We'd left it to freeze with the filter unplugged (and dropped into the bottom of the water where it'd maybe be safe against reasonable winter freezes) and the hoses leading up to the water fountain were out of place. And, of course, there's the fish who we couldn't catch, and couldn't see, because the pond was too frozen all winter and too murky early on to check on them.
But Monday was a reasonably clear day --- it would rain, but it wasn't yet --- and was warm and made about the best chance to pull the filter out of the water, put it into the milk carton full of charcoal that serves to filter stuff out of the water, and drop it back in. We couldn't put it back in as centrally to the pond as we wanted, nor arrange the hoses to be as well-hidden as we wanted, because the pond water is still too cold to go rooting about in. Or at least it would've been unpleasant for a marginal improvement; we can go back in a month or so when the water's nicer to deal with, and can go in shorts or bathing suits and get things better-aligned.
So, and swiftly, the pond was gurgling again with the water pouring into the upper pond and dribbling down the waterfall. The smell was horrible, but then, the pond's been dormant for months, and water was sitting in the upper cistern for much of that time. It improved over the course of the day, and the water was somewhat clearer just the next day. (Granted, Tuesday was also a sunnier day.) I haven't seen evidence of any fish surviving yet, unfortunately, but the pond is still fairly murky and I suppose I'm slow to accept the facts. Pity me.
Trivia: Space Shuttle Main Engines caught on fire in test stand launches twice in July 1980. Source: Development Of The Space Shuttle 1972 - 1981, T A Heppenheimer.
Currently Reading: The President Is A Sick Man: How The Supposedly Virtuous Grover Cleveland Survives A Secret Surgery At Sea And Vilifies The Courageous Newspaperman Who Dared Expose The Truth, Matthew Algeo. One suspects Algeo's publishers feared readers were wholly unaware of Cleveland's secret cancer surgery and would need some further information about the scandal so as to find it interesting.