“It’s unnerving to travel this fast,” he searched once more for something to hold onto but found nothing. The manufacturers had realized that the inertial dampers would never allow the movements of the ship to be felt by its passengers and had provided no handholds.
“You are, in all probability, traveling slower than you ever have in your entire life,” I rested my hands on the edge of the control panel and waited for him to express his lack of knowledge.
“The earth is moving toward Leo at 390 kilometers per second. And we are traveling away from Leo,” he said, spoiling my fun. “And we are traveling right at 400 kilometers per second,” he added, looking at the dash display. “So, in relation to Leo we are almost standing still.”
“Yes,” I replied, trying not to show my disappointment in his lack of ignorance.
“Still seems fast,” he said.
Set the drilling bucket on the ground. Start the drilling table turning. Nudge the wench up a little to lower the bucket an inch. Nudge it again and again. Watch the bucket fill. Push down on the wench lever until the bucket clears the top of the drilling table. One person pulls on top of the drilling bucket and climbs onto the drilling table in one movement. One person pushes the bucket as he hooks the hole in the bucket’s side and prepares to pull. One pulls, one pushes until the person on the drilling table is almost parallel with the ground pushing on the side of the drilling table with his toes. The person pushing releases the trap door at the bottom of the bucket and the dirt dumps. The person with the rope sets the empty bucket next to the drilling table. The wench lever is pulled gently and the bucket sits on the drilling table closing the trap door, which is the bottom of the drilling bucket. Reach up and latch the hinged bottom into place. Raise the bucket, center it in the drilling table, and lower it into the hole. Start the bucket turning. Repeat, over and over and over until the thirty-three inch hole is about ten to fourteen feet deep. Now, when the empty bucket is lowered into the hole stop the top of the bucket just below the drilling table and slide the reamer blade into its slot and drop the hitch pin into place. Lower the bucket until the reamer blade rests lightly on the earth around the thirty-three inch hole and start it turning. The dirt will fill the bucket quickly as a five-foot across hole is created but some dirt will fall through into the already drilled thirty-three inch hole. Repeat the total process, including adding and taking off the reamer blade, until the center hole is filled. When the center hole is filled stop putting on the reamer blade and drill out the center thirty-three inch hole ten feet or so to provide room for the dirt that falls outside the bucket while reaming. Do this over and over and over until the five foot part of the hole is fourteen feet deep. Throw the reamer blade into a tool box so no one has to look at it any more, we are done with it. Drill your little heart out. When the thirty-three inch wide hole is about twenty feet from the top of the drilling table the eight by eight inch plate at the top of the six by six shaft will rest on the top of the yoke and allow the five-inch by five-inch shaft to telescope out of the bottom of the six-inch by six-inch shaft. We are drilling for sand. Sand in this area is usually about twenty-five or thirty feet down and it would be nice, for drainage, to end up at least eight feet into good coarse sand. Set up as we are we can drill down to about thirty-seven feet. When we finish drilling the thirty-three inch wide hole will be filled with rocks, the five foot wide hole will receive ten feet of perforated three foot wide concrete pipe with a concrete lid and more rocks will be added filling the outside gap between the pipe and our hole, leaving the inside of the concrete pipe empty. One drywell is finished.