Saturday, April 8, 2017

The Haunted Castle

I've had a lot of spooky experiences over my long life, mostly involving living on very old property that was known for it's Indians.  The dorm rooms at Yosemite National Park where I worked for a few years, were always the scene of some weird unexplainable things happening.  Scary things!!!  I thought I had left all that behind.

My Castle, as my friends call it (because of the really big wood and iron front door) has had a visitor for the last few days, causing me to scratch my head.  After the gardener fixed the leaking sprinkler valve, I turned the entire system OFF.  With a thunderstorm headed this way and the flooded flowerbeds only half gone, I really didn't need any more water on the lawn.

As I sat on the couch, Cooper took to barking.  I glanced out the window.  Nothing.  He barked again.  Still nothing I could see.  Really Cooper?  You're going to make me get up off the couch and see what the problem is?  Wait ..... it's the sprinklers in the front yard.  I distinctly remember turning those OFF.   Always listen to Cooper ... he is NEVER wrong!!
I grabbed my shoes and went outside to find it was ON again.  Now really folks, I KNOW I turned it off.  So OFF it went again.  I returned to my warm couch.  Cooper barked even louder.  Good grief!!  I turned the system OFF.  By now it's raining of course, so I grabbed a coat and went outside for the second time.  The system really WAS off, yet the sprinklers were running ..... and running .....

I did everything I could to shut it off, but they were having none of it.   I reprogrammed it, turned it off, set other valves to turn on and off ... everything ... and yet they kept spewing out water.    There really MUST be a ghost around here!!

So like for the fifth time, I called the gardener.  He was pretty puzzled too, and finally shut off my main water valve in order to make it stop.  Once reopened, the sprinklers never came back on.   Maybe it's a valve thing.

Next thing I know, the Ghost is in my closet, which would have been okay if he was tall, dark and handsome.  I had an Elks meeting to attend and needed a jacket.  I grabbed one out of my closet.  That's weird ... where did THIS come from.   I don't remember buying this, which is probably just a case of me not remembering.  When I put it on however, I got the shock of my life!!  All those sparkley things on the arm?  I've NEVER bought anything this glitzy!!  Where in the world did this COME from??   It must be that darn ghost again!
Getting a little worried about appeasing the ghosty, I spent the rest of the afternoon baking cookies since it was pouring down rain.  My once dry flowerbeds are again flooded to the brim.  We didn't have much in the way of wind, but I got several videos from the Oregon Coastline of 70-80 mph winds with water crashing clear over the road (and their car) as they drove to Astoria down one of my favorite roads.  I kind of wish I was there with my camera, but then again, I'm kind of glad I'm home instead.
I cooked an amazing dinner for the ghosty last night that you are not going to believe.  I figure if I appease him a little MORE, he won't keep turning my sprinklers on.  It was SO simple, yet SO delicious!!  Paella!!  I don't know what got in to me as that's NOT something I would ever venture to try.  Maybe it was the ghost whispering in my ear!!!  I'll provide the easy recipe tomorrow!!


  1. It sounds like you have a zone open, Your photo is showing three zones
    The easiest way to check that and to know which zone controls which area is turned your sprinkling system on
    When the zone opens up go feel the valve you'll feel the water flowing through it with a magic marker Mark that has a certain zones one through three
    cycle it to the second zone mark that one as well as recycling it again to Mark zone one
    That way you'll know which valve is open an which is closed
    Somewhere you must have a shut off valve for the master sprinkler system
    With that zone is running in the sprinklers are working shut master valve off the water should stop if it continues you've got a bad Master shut off valve
    You might want to try that step each time you do a new zone
    That way if your Casper the ghost turns on your sprinklers go check your master valve to see which one is flowing that could be your culprit
    Also note the time on a piece of paper when you go to the controller you could check that against your input settings

    1. Here's the funny part ... I double and triple checked the zone controls. Two were off before I turned the third one off ... and they still kept running. Yeah ... thinking it's a bad valve. It will be the second one replaced this week and I still have another one leaking. I guess 10 years is their lifetime limit!!