I leave and breathe dependency chains. It’s how I get stuff done. People work dependency chains all the time without even realising. For the uninitiated, a dependency chain is the list of tasks that need do be done as pre-requisites to fulfil a goal. These tasks tend to be serial and an example could be, to watch the TV, which requires the remote control, which has run out of batteries and needs new ones, which needs a trip to the shops as there are no spares, which needs the car to be refilled because it is low on fuel.
I consciously work through dependency chains and mine can be somewhat convoluted. It’s not unusual for me to be polishing the kitchen worktop and topping up the spare toilet roll just to make some toast. The link is there through a tortuous chain of dependencies, knocking down each pre-requisite task like a set of dominos until the end goal is reached.
Site of the new compost heap
The current dependency chain I’m working on in the garden is a compost heap, which I want to make at the back of the garden as a place to have a single, final discard pile instead of the several we have around the garden at the moment. Working backwards, this is how the dependency chain sort-of goes.
- Compost heap needs the old rotting shed to be taken down
- which needs the area around it cleared
- which needs the ground levelled
- which needs the pile of dumped soil moved elsewhere,
- which needs the rubbish moved from on top of it
- which needs the wheel barrow
- which needs the bin collection to empty
There are chain off chains. In order to have a clear area around the old shed in order to take it down, I also need to cut the lower branches of the beech trees at the back, these will need disposing of along with the rubbish cleared around the old shed. The inside of the shed also needs to be emptied and rubbish disposed of, which needs a trip to the tip which needs a couple of new tyres on the car as we have a slow puncture, which needs an appointment with the garage, which needs the credit topped up on the mobile phone, which needs pay day. It’s the classic case of one job requiring five before it in order to get done.
Clearing and levelling
In the end, all I want is a pile to put grass clippings and prunings, but it’s taken many weeks of clearing rubbish, moving soil, burning waste and levelling just to have an area to work with. At least all this hard work should be just a one-time event only. I’m desperate to have my compost heap as it’s the one place where I can put garden rubbish that’s not temporary and so won’t have to be moved somewhere else at a later date. After three years of clearing discard piles only to have more spring up elsewhere, it would be a novelty so this is one very long dependency chain that I am glad to be gradually working through.