Everything must perish

For a decade, before we built this house, we made do with a rather smaller dwelling during our stay. It was supposed to be a quick fix when we first put it up, to afford us some privacy and a place to rest our heads. Actually, it started life as a barn, already existent when we bought the land.

It was a very modest building. The downstairs ceiling was always too low, and water used to flow across the tiled floor during rainy season. We had a compact kitchen, sufficient for preparing simple meals.

There was a wood burning stove, capable of supplying hot water to the radiators around the house, only ever used during a spring stay in the early days. When my parents visited eight years ago, my wife and I slept down here. An experience much like camping.

Upstairs, a dual-purpose room. Living room by day, bedroom by night, the sofas converting into beds. It also served as my office, encouraged to work remotely by my manager at the time.

Our children later got their own space in the second upstairs room, beside a very poorly constructed staircase.

Meals were mostly eaten on the balcony in those days. A useful space for drying washing and nuts harvested from our trees.

We also had space in the loft, but the ceiling was once again too low, making it impractical for me, although the children managed to make use of it.

For years, Little House served us well, but we have outgrown it. It needed a lot of work to remain useful. We toyed with making alterations and repairs, but in the end decided to start over. We couldn’t have done what we have now done a decade ago. We’ve always been a couple who spends only when we have the money. Everything has its time and place

The old place is in a state of disrepair. I have spent the day sweeping the house, in preparation for having the furniture cleaned and moved. What happens to the building now is yet to be decided. But one thing is evident: everything must naturally perish, degrading and returning to source.

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