Thursday, November 23, 2006

Clearing the Lot

It was one of those perfect late fall days - sunny and just shy of cold, high 40s. Although Dad and I got a late start, we made short work of the many bushes and small trees that populated the level part of our lot. I am not an experienced chain saw-user and was quickly winded by the exertion. So we switched off and took turns dragging branches and stacking logs. With each bush and small tree that came down the view got more and more open and the lot looked more and more like a building site. As you can probably see from the images we are quite high up in elevation (at least by eastern Massachusetts standards) and with the leaves down, there is a pretty view of the hills to the south and west. Really, this is more than I could have hope for, given the limitations of our resources. (I feel a tangent coming...) For me, there is a spiritual lift that comes from any increase in elevation. The higher up I am the "loftier" my feelings become. The idea of building a house on some sort of rise has always appealed to me. When we stumbled across this lot I knew we had found something special. Anyway, after a few hours of sawing and dragging, we had cleared everything we could by ourselves. There is one large tree that needs to be taken down by a professional, and some large limbs off another. At about 2:00 our architect, Noah, showed up. He came bearing good news: the set of plans that had been stamped by the engineer had arrived from ENER. This means we are nearly ready to submit the permit application. After Dad left, Noah and I staked out the footprint of the house - which was also very exciting. Physically locating the house on the property sent my imagination to work and I could begin to visualize just what this house would look like next year. At the end of the day I was able to survey a clear lot and four tall stakes sticking out of the ground where a house will soon grow.