Sunday, July 26, 2009

1st Anniversaries and Tractor Accidents

It was one year ago today that Jeremy and I first drove out to the land. One year ago that we seriously discussed a potential future in the country. One year ago that we made our level-headed plans. And one year ago that we pulled into a nearby park after walking around the property for a frantic discussion. Maybe this was worth considering, but it's crazy to consider, but really what are the chances that rural land would be so close to soccer fields and downtown Austin? And on, and on, and on..... Sometimes I wonder what we were thinking deciding to jump into such a big decision without first seeing at least 10 properties, without conducting sophisticated research (not sure about what, but it seems there should have been more of it), or without having long drawn out discussions about the future. But then again, that's just not our style I suppose.

In honor of this anniversary, or really just coincidentally, we spent this land-anniversary weekend talking to an architect. Say wha??!!? That's right. Like most of our long-term planning, we've decided to go ahead and condense the building time frame as well. We're nothing if not consistent.

Now, before you go off and start buying housewarming presents, I must be clear that no ground will be broken, no water lines dug, no curtains hung for...quite...some...time (Dramatic sigh. Eye roll). This is the beginning of what will likely be a tedious process considering the enormity of our project. Refer to the earlier comment about perhaps needing more research before buying the property? You see, we have what is called "raw" land. As in: no water (we borrow neighbor's water for animals), no electric, no septic. Nada. Just lots of trees and dust and chiggers. The cherry on top of our situation is that our area boasts the worst type of soil for building. Being primarily composed of clay, it expands and shrinks and moves and shakes depending on the weather, humidity, and whenever it feels like it. Clay soil = complicated (read: expensive) foundation to engineer for any home building. OY. Again, what were we thinking? Clearly, we didn't do our homework and ask the right questions and analyze soil samples before signing ownership papers.

But today, today we marked off the four corners of what will one day be our home. We stood on our imaginary porches. We learned that the western sun casts shadows on the ground through the oak and elm trees as it sets in the 'backyard.' We heard leaves tumbling against the ground in the breeze...a neigbhor's rooster...something scurry around a tree (it was Boo). It feels like home, bad soil or no, with or without all the necessary utilities. Probably, this is an important feeling to remember as we begin the process of planning, re-planning, over-planning, and building.

And I suppose I exaggerated a bit about the accident. To be specific, it was my phone that had an accident with the tractor. It accidentally ended up beneath the tractor wheel (but it still works! This is my official plug for LG phones). Wait a second, did I just say, without laughing, that my phone was run over by a tractor? One year ago today, that would be an impossible statement. Happy anniversary.

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