Once upon a time, about 15 years ago, I bought five acres of wooded land in Chatham County, NC. The act satisfied a long standing desire to own a piece of land with lots of trees, that was not part of a suburban tract. I have been aimed at moving onto the property in some fashion ever since.
The first attempt was the result of a lot of determination, very little money and even less common sense. I bought a 40 foot army tent and, with the help of friends and family. got it put up and moved in with a box spring and mattress on a platform, kerosene lamps and a patio table and chairs. The majority of my possessions were either distributed to family or put into storage. It was hard work, great fun, and lasted three months. Memorable achievements included a friend hooking up a very small light bulb to a car battery with a light switch at the inside of the entrance flap (what luxury), constructing a shelter around an outside camping toilet, hanging up a sun shower, and putting together a memorable dinner of breaded chicken breasts, fettucine alfredo and fresh spinach salad with a camping stove, an accessory fire pit and the help of a bottled of chilled Riesling.
It was beautiful getting up and seeing the early morning mist rising and the only sound being the waking bird calls. The smell of coffee brewing on the camp stove seemed extra flavorful mixed with the earthy smell of the woods.
But other parts of my life did not mix well with this level of homesteading so before long I moved back into town to pursue the other goals of that time. But the plan to build something on the land was always percolating in the background.
Now I’m putting aside anything that might interfere with what has forever been in my heart to do: live free and clear with lots of outside space around to call my own. The size and style of the dwelling has always been secondary to the landscape and setting. As long as there are loads of windows and it has indoor plumbing, electricity and a gas stove I’ll be happy.
Here are some pics of the first venture onto the land.
Eric hauling in the tent.
Spreading it out and looking it over.
The tent is up.
Proud tent owner!
Time for a glass of wine.