While there are worse things in the world (far worse, as Paul Theroux's new book about Africa, /Last Train to Zona Verde/, lays out), when it's 1:00am and you have to climb down a ladder, go outside into 45° weather, and trudge 30 feet through a cold, intensely driving rain, to piddle in a dark, spidery outhouse, things that are worse in the world don't really enter your mind.
That is one of the reasons Ian and I are glad that this week we are meeting with builders to discuss the feasibility of, and timing for, building our Orcasita.
So far, so good, mostly. The two builders we've met both seem to be highly skilled, and both have created attractive, sturdy buildings in a variety of styles, some matching our vision for our own home (but all showing a flexibility of talent). They've made varying suggestions for lowering costs with minimal changes to our design, but have also indicated that what we want to do with the money we think we have is within reasonable parameters of success. That sounds pretty wishy-washy, as statements of intent go, but gives us comfort, at this early stage in the game, that within a couple years we'll be piddling in an indoor, fully-plumbed master bath at 1:00am during an autumn storm.
The only problem so far is that we've been hoping that we would like only one of the three men we're meeting, as that would make our decision easier. There is still some chance that we won't like today's--although we ran into him yesterday when he was scoping out our building site with his excavator and his 3-year-old chocolate Lab, so his sense of responsibility and his choice of animal companion makes disliking him unlikely.
There are just good people up here, and, considering that our building site--unusual on Orcas--involves no blasting of bedrock, but will be rather a sandbox-digging sort of experience--I think it's a contract most would be happy to land.
We'll have some work to do to finalize this early construction stage, but we're incrementally closer to living here full-time.
We'll be able to lounge on our master deck, gazing at the sky as the evening stars appear, listening to the honks and wing-beats of geese coming in to roost for the night on the banks of a nearby pond. And then we'll take one step /inside/, brush our teeth at a sink, and fall into bed.
one-fingered on my phone