Day 71: still digging

Day 71:

I haven’t  found the zombie in the wall yet but I did find a whole lot of gravel, most of it falling down from an insecure ceiling. I’m not sure if I want to dig up from there to find out if I’m under the lake. Thinking no.

I’m also thinking I’m going to go out spider hunting in the mornings a lot more. There’s nothing that passes for vines or rope here except for the spider webs that the giant pony spiders leave behind. I tried weaving out of the wheat-like grass that’s here, but other than getting a ton of tiny paper cuts from the leaf blades I achieved nothing.

Ugh! If there was even, like, one other person here with me, so many things would be easier! There’s no one to hold the other end of a thing, or lift the other end of a thing, so I’m constantly trying to come up with ways to do things just by myself. And I have to be like four times as cautious as I would be if I wasn’t alone, because there’s no one to help me if I get seriously injured.

I’m starting to wonder if I should try to befriend — or at least capture and train — a zombie. That’s pretty desperate.

line sketch, very loose, of a giant spiderweb between two trees. labeled "pony-sized spiders spin big webs."

Day 70: Drill bits

Day 70:

Realized this morning that I’m going to need to make drill bits if I’m going to make a bridge. It’ll be my biggest piece of woodworking and I don’t trust it to the rough joints I’ve been using for other things.

That means I’m looking for more iron ore, which means I’m digging deeper again.

Also, you know how all those old books used to talk about people who could hear mice in their walls, back on Earth? I think I have a zombie in one of my walls. Every time I’m near it, it groans or growls. It’s either that or a really really big mouse.

Ink and watercolor sketch. Top left, a standard wood drill bit, labeled "what people expect drill bits to look like". Bottom right, a piece of metal with wedges cut out of it as if it is a crown or a top set of triangular teeth (more like a saw) with a wooden dowel  hollow in the center behind it. Labeled "what mining bits actually look like"
The center of the wood dowel is hollow so the stone or whatever has somewhere to go. Probably not as good for a wood bridge, but I can make a mining bit here. Twisty drill bits are too hard to make.

Day 69: lazy

Day 69:

Today I took care of the animals then took a nap. Didn’t work on anything. Sometimes you need those days, especially when your blisters have blisters.

Watercolor depicting a beachfront, very loose and impressionist. Top: blue sky. Middle, darker blue water. From middle of page to the bottom is sand, with dots representing umbrellas in red, yellow, and blue. A white lifeguard chair with an orange umbrella is just left of center.
I miss the beach

Day 68: Contemplating bridges

Day 68:

I cut wood all day today. Definitely making gloves next chance I get. You’d think by now I couldn’t get blisters, but it turns out that swinging a pickaxe and swinging an axe are distinctly different movements that blister distinctly different parts of my hands.

Today’s one of those days where I’m grateful that the spring in my cave is ice cold, is what I’m saying.

I’m cooking down some wood into charcoal because I haven’t hit a vein of coal in ages and charcoal’s better for melting iron than straight wood, which is too inconsistent in its temperature.

I’ll admit that I originally started chopping wood so that I could make a bridge, but then it occurred to me that I’d have to haul the support logs all the way to the river, and Stupid would probably have objections. Not sure I can blame the horse for that. So instead, charcoal, and a plan to continue digging toward the mountain so that I don’t have to be worried about being caught outside near the river.

That’s today’s plan, anyway.

two very loose line sketches of bridges. The first is pillars of rocks with boards on top. The second is one giant log across the river. Labeled "bridge ideas".
I certainly don’t have enough iron for a bridge

Day 67: Nothing is easy here

Day 67:

Packed some good tools in one of my rock-hauling sacks, rode Stupid until we reached the shadow of the mountain… and discovered there’s a river in front of it.

Turns out the lake that is near the front of my place is fed by a very large river right in front of the mountain. Makes sense, I guess, since the rain that falls on the mountain has to go somewhere.

But Stupid wanted nothing to do with fording the river, so we turned around and rode back, this time following the water so I could see where it goes.

Sure enough, if I keep tunneling in the direction I’m currently going, I’m going to hit the river.

So a bridge maybe? I have to think on this.

An updated version of the author's map. At the top, the mountain. In front of that, a river that runs from the left of the page to the right, where it becomes a lake. Below the river (blocking the view of the mountain) are trees, then indicators for "where I've tunneled to" in the middle and "home" and "yard" at the bottom.
Stupid trees blocked my view of the river