Changes Across the Road
Changes and fear of the unknown.
We’ve experienced both here at Our Little House this week. My aunt placed 15 acres across the road from us for sale; that has brought us both the fear of the unknown and will ultimately bring change.
When my mom, aunt/uncle and sister looked at these 30 acres of land 29 years ago, the real estate agent actually tried talking them out of it, telling them it was “too far out” and would “never be developed.”
It’s what my family wanted in a piece of property, but how wrong that real estate agent was, all of the surrounding land that wasn’t Corps of Engineer owned was sold, and the area began developing in earnest in the late 1980s into the 1990s.
A neighbor (neighbor is a relative term here since she lives more than two miles up the mountain) tells me sometimes how sad it makes her to come down our road now and see the electrical lines and the road widened for the traffic.
They bought their house in 1986, not long after my family purchased this property, but long before my aunt had the lines run to her new home for electricity. Our neighbor and her husband used to take long and quiet walks down our road through undeveloped wilderness.
I know that feeling as I’ve experienced it with each new home that is built or every new resident that’s brought more traffic down our road.
What our neighbor does realize is that if my family hadn’t ran that first electrical and phone line down this road, another would have. She’s thankful that at least someone with a factory turkey farm (there are so many in this region) didn’t buy the land and she’s happy that at least we’ve tried to maintain as much of the natural forest as we could; that we’ve been respectful in leaving as small as a footprint as possible.
I posted here on Tuesday about a friend of mine who bought a small weekend cabin. I fielded some negative comments on the blog and on the Facebook page about my encouraging people to develop unspoiled wilderness to follow their dreams (a hater who claims religious moral indignation even stalked my friend’s email address and found it necessary to send her some anonymous hate mail, which is why we’ve removed all references to her identity).
It might be the green eyed monster of envy that sparked these responses, but just maybe a couple of these readers have somehow missed the point of this forum.
We do encourage people to follow their dreams, but advocate leaving as small of a footprint on the earth as possible.
J. did not buy undeveloped land and build a McMansion on it, she saved for six years and bought a small cabin that was already there and I know by her convictions on living sustainably that no other person will be better suited to care take that land.
We advocate for people like J. to buy existing small homes or build them, if that’s what they want to do, because that certainly is preferable to developers who want to split the land into subdivision plots for McMansions (as happened at the top of our mountain 3 years ago), factory farms or fracking companies who will rob the earth of its resources and leave it poisoned with tons of chemicals.
Even as we’re faced with our own fear of the unknown and changes here at Our Little House, we will continue to encourage people who dream of living a life outside of the city in a small home to do so, whether they can do it full time or part time, as long as they aspire to leave as small of a footprint as possible.
As my neighbor up the road saw 30 years ago and as we are seeing across the road now, the land will be sold anyway. It’s the price we pay as a society that encourages hard work to follow our dreams of homeownership, which IMO, is still better than in the countries where homeownership is a dream most people will never know.
I only hope that by encouraging responsible development, Karma comes full circle and we get a neighbor (instead of several in a subdivision) who also shares the same respect for our earth and for the land we so love here.
Is your dream to have a small cabin in the woods and if so, do you think you should follow it if you can?