I love having a window over the kitchen sink. When we first moved here, the view of a parking lot was less than thrilling. At least we didn’t look out into someone else’s living room, or bathroom, right?
Over the years the view has changed, although to an outsider it probably looks almost identical to how it looked 4 years ago. Now, instead of an a/c unit, short stretch of grass, odd eroded bit of earth, then parking lot, there is an a/c unit, wind chimes, bird feeders, bare earth that marks the space where the kid swing hangs in the summer, and the puddle where our house sump pump drains in the winter. Up until this week the bird feeder was undiscovered ,but the finches finally found the feeder located right outside the kitchen window! It only took 5 months of waiting through the winter.
A few years ago Della described this puddle as the house potty and the name stuck. During the loooooong freezing months, the church trustees disconnect the drain system that goes out the street; if those pipes froze our basement would flood. The indirect result is that there is a fresh source of water for wildlife, mainly birds, all winter long. With Spring right around the corner, this area is hopping with birds all day long. Last year a young wounded morning dove dragged himself across the parking lot and sipped a few lifesaving drops of water from this space. I watched his progress from the kitchen window. When Timm came home that evening, I carefully captured the dove (wearing clean gloves) and delivered him to the local wildlife hospital.
When it is finally warm enough to go outside, I let my kids splash around in it and sail leaf boats down the tiny stream caused by the gushing sump pump.
Pretty soon the draining system will be hooked up again to go out to the street, and for the foundation of the house that’s probably for the best, but I’ll sure miss the house potty. It’s one of those things you’d never plan on, and seems odd at first, but it is certainly a blessing.
If we owned this house, I would probably landscape the area to have a dry creek bed lead down to a boggy area and plant mint, iris, and swamp marigolds. For now, a pot of mint at the kitchen sink satisfies the landscaping impulse.