I brought my equipment into the house, proclaimed its kitchen to be a temporary US Inspect field office, and announced to all that now was an appropriate point in time for an official US Inspect taste-test analysis of the well water. Filling a large tumbler at the kitchen sink faucet, I raised my little finger and chugged. I adopted a thoughtful, analytic demeanor. It was monstrous good. Just to be sure, I filled the tumbler once more and savored it more slowly this time. “Pleasingly hard, with an elusive manganese bouquet, and a well-balanced nitrite finish,” I reported to all. “On with the inspection! I am refreshed.” To the basement I went with my retinue of Mr. and Mrs. Client and their real estate agent.
Not uncommonly, some older properties in this area have wells in their basements. In short order, we arrived at it. It was a shallow well inside a cast concrete casing about four feet in diameter with a heavy concrete lid on the top of the casing. I proceeded to slid the lid away enough to gain a look-see down into the well.
My flashlight beam shone into the well water and upon two foreign objects therein. From their general size and shape, plus the presence of four leg-like appendages on each, I could determine that they were large rodents of some sort; squirrels or rats, most likely. Unfortunately, they were far too decomposed and bloated for a more definitive determination.
It was too late to spit or otherwise purge myself of the two large tumblers of water I had imbibed. My dehydrated body had wicked it up like a willow tree drawing effluent from a septic system. My only consolation was that I have a good immune system. It was at about that point in my inspection career that I adopted the habit of carrying bottled water in my Jeep. I commend the practice to all.