This is looking north up the garden. The bottom pond, where the spade is sticking up, has been partially dug out by one of Last-Born's friends (thanks Luke!) and stayed like that for about a year, but at least it showed where the pond was. Himself is digging away in the top pond.
The paths form a sort of wiggly Y shape with a right-handed curve coming off the bottom of the Y. The bottom path forms the curve at the bottom of the Y. The path enters the garden at the right hand edge of this photo behind the bamboos. It then crosses the as yet to be dug stream which is marked out by the (just visible) hosepipe and curves round to go between the circle of stones (that currently looks like a mini Stonehenge but is, in fact, going to be my tai chi training circle) and the pile of soil that will become the island of rocks. It then seperates roughly where the green trug is. One path goes to the right of the top pond up towards the piles of tree trunk slices (long story!), which is where the tea house will eventually be, and the other path goes to the left towards the pink trug and wheelbarrow to meet up with the hideous crazy paving path, which forms the top route into the garden.
The left-hand path meets the current path immediately below where the grass begins, just to the left of the barrow. The right-hand path will have to wait until I've redistributed the mountains of soil at the right-hand side of the photo! (approximately a year!!)
Himself working on the pond, whilst I dig the footings for the path.
It's quite deep for a footpath (a minor bone of contention as it was Himself's idea, but I had to dig it...!) but we desperately needed to :
a) gain more topsoil to get the levels right and
b) get rid of all the sandstone rubble we'd accumulated from digging up bedrock! and
c) it kept Himself very happy that we had remained cost and waste neutral so far!
More path footings. That year, work was also dictated by where the shade was! I'm in the shade from our cooking apple tree. we couldn't work on the pond beyond about 2.30pm as it was just too hot in the direct sunlight.
The footings were varying depths depending on the levels we needed around different parts of the garden. The two wooden posts are levels markers and the clear pipe is filled with water and was our giant spirit level.
For all I tease Himself, I could not have done this project without his mathamatical wizardry and attention to detail. I would not have known where to start to work out what the levels needed to be, let alone known how to do them - so, for all of that, and way, way more (including working blind because you still didn't really understand what I was up to!), I thank you from the bottom of my heart and pond my love!
This is the bottom bridge, below the island. The path has been roughly dug out and comes in at the top right of the photo beyond the pink trug. It'll meet the bridge, then come off this side at a slight angle so that it can come closer to the tai chi circle, where it will stay a constant distance from the circle but match the curve of the perimeter until it is at the point where it can split.
Looking up over the bottom pond to see the stream route. It goes under the bridge (obviously!) then curves to the right before looping left round the back of the island. Poor old Himself so desperately wanted nice clean, straight lines everywhere and I insisted on curves - guess which are easier to do!!