The school of country living: driveway maintenence.

In my previous post, I mentioned a few lessons learned. We’ve covered cranes and realizing office people are not a wealth of accurate information. Let’s talk about driveways.

My brother has a fair bit of property, much of it with gravel drives. We regularly comment that, “He must have just had a load of gravel dropped,” when the road is particularly good, but I’ve never stopped to analyze the basic underlying fact: unpaved driveways must, in fact, be maintained.

We have a gravel drive–two, if you’re counting. The second one has been basically unusable to this point, and it would have been a useful thing to have before now. Husband has been seeking a “gravel guy” to come spread some gravel for us, and we finally found one who came recommended by two separate friends of ours. (Side note: like everything else, there’s been some hiccups with finding a gravel guy, since there’s some construction going on near us and apparently they’ve all contracted out to finish that job. The guy we wound up hiring is driving thirty minutes to get to us.)

He (Gary is his name, BTW) showed up this morning (Wednesday), but not with gravel–with a bull dozer. I left to go to work while Scott stayed behind, took pictures, and helped. I wish we had taken more before photos, but here’s a before of the second (unused) drive:

IMG_0071

Can you even tell it’s meant to be driven on? Geez. (However, note the lovely pasture across the street. We sure have a nice view.) Now…
IMG_1840

Isn’t it beautiful? It may be hard to tell, but this drive would be way easier to back a ginormous trailer up…like we hope to do Thursday.

Our primary drive wasn’t that overgrown, but it had a lot of ruts in it from years of no maintenance and wash-out. But now, it’s a thing of beauty:

IMG_0070

It’s smooth. Flat. Even. A sheer pleasure to drive. Frankly, I didn’t realize how bad it was until I came home and it was magically fixed. This pic was taken before the gravel was added, but you get the idea.

I thought Gary was just coming to drop gravel, but once he arrived, he wound up essentially building us a new drive. He dozed our primary drive down flat, and dozed the overgrowth down on the secondary–all before he ever brought gravel.

So, friends, my lesson from the school of country living is that driveways must be maintained. If you do not maintain them, they will become rutted, grown-over, and overall, bleh. But, with a (dirt cheap) layer of gravel added here and there, you can maintain a pleasant driveway experience for years.

And you can always call Gary if it gets too bad, or you buy a property that has to have a new drive built. (Except you can’t because he’s so good that he’s slammed with business and frankly, I’m selfish, so I probably won’t give you his number. Unless you’re family. Or you bring me chocolate. Or ask nicely.)

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