An old friend Steve, wrote to me a while ago and said, “no offence meant here, but Tiny House Ontario is practically a hotel when compared to a hunting camp”. “Yes, this is the point”, was my answer. I have thought a lot about what Steve said and you know, he is not the only one either who puts these questions to me. My cousin Irene says that she wonders about me (she thinks I have gone mad). She has said to me more than once, “I lived that life for many years and I don’t understand why you want to go back to that!”
It is not about giving up on myself like men do in a hunting camp. It is also not about doing without, or making due, like it was for my cousin Irene. I simply don’t have five children to take care of in a home with no conveniences – I really do not know how women survived those hard times! I do not idealize these times. I do however idealize the less consumeristic life that people lead before all this advertising mania took over our lives.
There is a point to Tiny House Ontario and there are also several lines that I am not comfortable crossing. Still, the lines are fuzzy when it comes to the way that I live. I found this year when I was moving in, that I was not worried at all about plumbing, running water, electricity, but I did worry about two things. Firstly, I needed to get the in-house built because of the weirdo that I picked up on here and secondly, how would I paint without a studio? Now I have a bathroom – but I have not yet painted – but this may be just an issue of being so busy! Time will tell me.
The Tiny House objective is NOT to lead a hard life. I don’t always intend to live with no heat, plumbing, water, lights… so why do it now? It is hard to explain even to myself, what I am trying to do.
Here is what I mean, with water as an example.
It is great to have running water and taps. I get that! Really I do! Turn the tap or flush the toilet and presto snapo, there it is to take care of your needs. Why would I want to give that up? I mean, we need to have water to live. We drink, cook, and wash up after cooking with it; we also need it for personal bathing, and cleaning house. All of these needs are equally important for normal living (not for survival). Why would I want to live without water? I cannot live without water but I can, I found, easily live without running water. Simply put, until I have a well installed, I have do my own running for water. Fortunately, I have multiple sources of water within walking (or short driving) distance. I have a few jugs that I can carry from my friend’s homes without having a vehicle to get them. I have found that I can comfortably live with about 10 litres of water a day. It is not difficult or even a hardship to plan through this requirement. Still, if I did not have friends or family there, even this would become impossible, so I am grateful to them for allowing me to be a sponge (BAHAHAHA).
Along with cooking and cleaning with this 10 litres of water, I sponge bathe daily, wash my hair every third day, but even so, I need to shower weekly. Thankfully, Liisa allows me to do this at her house, still, I think that the rain water shower will be great once it is fully hooked up. I think, that with this connected that I will be able to reduce my dependence on gasoline because I drive to and from Liisa’s home for my weekly wash up. Laundry, I bring to town – I do not pull out the scrub board much.
I guess, what I am saying is that my objective is not to live in a hunting camp. I like things nice and I do also like to bathe and keep my hair looking fresh. Tiny House Ontario is not about living a life of total hardship (or isolation). I will in fact, put in a well with a hand pump as soon as money allows me to do this with cash. My objective is to have a property without having a mortgage on it. I don’t want any more debt than the mortgage on my Hamilton home (OK… I don’t want that either – but you know what I mean. I hope.).
My objective is to build the most comfortable and ecologically sustainable life that I can with the least amount of money. It is not an exercise in hardship. It is an exercise in self sustainability and kinship with those around me. As time and money dictate improvements will come. A little at a time. Tiny House Ontario is a work in progress. I am not sweating the things that I could use there. Still, if you know anyone who digs wells, donates solar arrays, donates and installs septic systems, donates and puts on siding, has a tiny 12 watt fridge or a two burner interior propane cooker… all for free… let me know. I am happy to bring on the conveniences.
Just because it is Tiny… does not mean that it is all free – but it also does not mean that it has to be awful either. If only I had a money tree…
Really, honestly, I am totally happy with the model below. A few cents at a time and with this, I grow a beautiful green life