We made a picnic of it, though

Moving the heavy pipes turned out to be the equivalent of pushing a reluctant elephant to face the way you want. Mercifully, we could roll the pipe like a wheel. The trick that finally worked for was to push a pipe over a 5″ dia log. This gave a pivot point about which we could move it. It called for several repeats.

It was getting dark. For Venu first, and soon for all of us, it would be a shameful defeat to postpone the challenge. We took it on. culvertTiny temper and tantrum breaks followed as suggestions were made, tried and given up. But we simply wouldn’t give up on the job. Lest I get too technical, let it suffice we did it by 8pm using no light but our night visions. [In the photo: Raju, Bhaskar, Abdul, Venu and Vembuli] It was totally dark. A light shone from a house about 50 yards away and it broke the darkness somewhat. We borrowed a feeble flashlight from a passerby to gather our tools scattered all around and to load the car. We had gone through 25 litres of drinking water. It was some picnic!

We stopped for tea at Kalpakkam. Everyone was jolly and animated and full of brags and praises. We exaggeratedly apologised all around, like some sports team after it wins a difficult game.

When I dropped Venu it was 9.45pm. When I washed up and stretched my pleasantly aching body on the floor of my apartment, it was 11pm. The pleasure of the day lingered as gentle pain in the limbs.culvert [Photo taken in the next daylight reveals our achievement]

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