On Thursday evening my friend Guillaume made the trip to Hamilton to spend the night with Hj and I. His intent was not simply to have a visit with us but to discuss his own tiny house build. His work as a chemical engineer has forced him through a few relocations, currently this involves a lot of hotel rooms and I can tell you from my own experience with work travel living in a suitcase is not nearly as glamourous as it might seem to those who have not done it. Every hotel in every city, no matter where you are becomes the same disconnected holding unit. Now, with his current location change he is keen to have a somewhat more stationary home which can be relocated when his career calls. A tiny house, is clearly his best and only option. However, the life appeals to him too. He loves the idea of a sustainable lifestyle and has big (ahem, tiny) plans. He is a person who is very connected to the Norse tradition and having a simpler life is strongly in keeping with his personal values.
We looked together through a lot of photos and talked about the long and short term planning aspects of owning a tiny house. As well we talked about him building the house while he stays at Tiny House Ontario. In fact, he will soon be buying a trailer and bringing it there to begin the job in earnest.
He will initially put the house in the clearing beside THO and once the shell is done it will be moved to its location at the rear of my land. In order to park the house back there he will have to do some land prep, which is to say that he will need to trim back the shrubs along the tractor path. They have grown back in since 2010 when we last cleared this route. He will also have to put in a couple of loads of gravel and will get my cousin Kenny to smooth this in. This will cost him between $600 and $1000 which is a reasonable amount of rent for him to pay for the year and the benefit to me is that it will be easier to get in there if there is a fallen tree or simply to walk back to the rear of the acreage.
The natural location for him to place his house is to go where Great Giant Clyde fell and was removed over winter. The naturally made hole in the canopy is ideal because this will allow him to collect sun for his solar system. I am happy to know that absolutely no tree will need to be removed in order to provide Guillaume with a little space to call his own. His location will be about 1/6th of a kilometre to my own house but we will be divided by the thick prickly pear line so we will both enjoy 100% privacy in our homes. The other benefit is that he is open to allowing me to share all the steps he makes in the building of his home, so this will provide me with a lot of fodder for my writing.
In short, we are great friends and soon we will be great neighbours as well.
I would like to take this time to say goodbye to Clyde and thank him for creating space for Guillaume.