Chop wood/fetch water

It´s been some hectic weeks.
It´s not the moving as much as it is the way my soul lingers in the air, trying to catch up with my body but my body is too quick and my soul is too old. And grumpy.
And the inevitable downer after weeks of WROOM.
And the sheer workload- establishing oneself off the grid is not done easily nor in a day; the battery bank, the drainage system, the compost, the chicken coop, which trees to plant, which trees to take down for firewood and so on. I find myself to be experienced, I look at myself, I look at us, amazed of our work discipline (who would have thought?), our teamwork, the way we get shit done. We KNOW what to do. We are… experienced. Yeah.
Yeah!
Chop wood. Fetch water.
Chop wood. Fetch water.
Wtf happened here? How did this come to be?
Chop wood. Fetch water.

This is hometree.

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So we found this house in the woods, nobody has lived here in 75 years, it´s old, worn, timber framed underneath the seemingly modern red planks, the hearth takes up half of the living space, there’s a root cellar, compost toilet, barn.
This house reminds me of who we are and what we wanted.
It´s like we had somewhat strayed… (I want to talk about how choices has to be made all of the time. I want to talk about freedom as process. I want to talk about staying true)

Contacted the owners. Ate dinner with them. Shared thoughts and emotions.
Given that we don’t have a lot of money the deal had to be different and so it is.
This can’t be done from the comfort of an apartment in the city and this can’t be done unless you’ve laid down years of hard work, somewhere, for something.
You have to prove yourself.
I used to hate that about life.
Now it kind of makes sense.

Luck is earned. Luck is not out of our hands.
Does not mean bad thing don’t happen to good people (because it does), I´m not talking about the absence of pain or even trouble, it´s something else.

I don’t think life is fair.
I think life is beautifully brutal.

I think sometimes magic happen.

So I have this baking oven now (behind the boards)

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And I have this living room

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And I have these winter stews

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And I live in this golden forest

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(I LIVE IN THE FOREST OF GOLD!)

Between the bog and the lake, taking care of the old.

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We are going to restore the house, build it up again from within, from the bottom and from the top. We´re going to set up a self sufficient homestead here. A forest garden. A prepper heaven. A permacultural sanctuary for lost souls.

What does one do with that?
To have all this while others suffer. To have all this (happiness) without becoming a brand or, oh god, a “success-story”, without turning into an arrogant idiot thinking that they alone are responsible for all that they have… when everything we have depends on a multitude of people and choices creating this magic moment for me to LAND.

Sometimes I think I have arrived at the shores of autofiction (creative non-fiction), sometimes think I have reached the END.

But then again… if I stopped now the story would be too simple, wouldn’t it?
It’s just that I don’t know where to go from here. I don’t know what to say. And what is life anyways? Where does the universe stop?

Maybe modern storytellers are not confined to beginnings and ending, you know, thoughts like that, all of the time, perplexed, eyeballs popping out of my head, wtf happened here…
CHOP WOOD.
FETCH WATER.

16 thoughts on “Chop wood/fetch water

  1. Dear Andrea, I read your blog for years, I read your books as well. I never felt like writing a comment, I don’t know why actually. Today I just want to be part of this happiness you spread all over the world. Your posts feel happy, I’m happy to read them. I’m so glad you found the place of autonomy. Good luck and many greetings to Southern Sweden from Northern Ireland! 🙂 Gabriela

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear andrea
    I am happy that you are among deciduous trees. Beech and oak maybe? (For myself, I much prefer hardwood forests to deciduous ones.)
    Guessing there are a multitude of things to do before winter sets in, but then perhaps you can rest and cocoon? In any case, this is a wonderful story!
    All best,
    ~ abigail

    Liked by 1 person

    1. P. S.cannot believe i wrote “i much prefer hardwood forests to deciduous ones” b/c hardwood forests ARE deciduous. (ha hah, smartypants AH.) and still, only a deciduous forest can be a Forest of Gold, and only a deciduous forest can give a harvest of leaves to build soil with.

      it sounds as if you and your family have finally landed on your feet in the middle of a deeply wonderful scénario.

      all good wishes,
      ~ abigail

      Like

  3. “You have to prove yourself. – I used to hate that about life. – Now it kind of makes sense.
    Luck is earned. Luck is not out of our hands. – Does not mean bad thing don’t happen to good people (because it does), I´m not talking about the absence of pain or even trouble, it´s something else. – I don’t think life is fair. – I think life is beautifully brutal. – I think sometimes magic happen.”

    Wow do I ever agree with that statement.

    Then your golden forest. Incredible! I am SO happy for you! You totally deserve this gift.

    Lastly, I know you aren’t thinking along these lines but you may be able to gain possession of your land and house at some point in the future through legal means because of your efforts in putting in all that work to improve it. You don’t have adverse possession but you might have another type of possession. Maybe some kind of lease back. Now that I think of it – and I don’t know the landowners at all – but you might want a protective agreement between you because what if you put in all that work and then they kick you out once you’ve made it worth something. Maybe you feel that your arrangement is fair. Just thinking out loud. All love, Renee

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The Forest of Gold is so beautiful, I’m sure even more so when it is before you and not through a lens.
    I know how the work goes! We are also there – inspired by you. We are working to be off-grid, to move finally out to where we have our goats and cows and garden, after years of driving and wanting to live there. I felt like we couldn’t, because out there we didn’t have the same as what we have in the city.

    Your writing made me realize – this is not the same. It never will be. The life out there shouldn’t be what we have been living in town, I don’t even want it that way. There is this sacrificing of convenience and of material things that seems so difficult to our friends and family, that at one time seemed difficult to me, too. We are giving up old things we never had time to enjoy anyway, and we are walking into our own Forest of Gold without burdens. I feel only joy and relief, but meanwhile, the work. Sometimes overwhelming, but also there is joy behind it.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Please just write. Your everyday life is far from mundane. We learn from one another- we inspire one another.

    Sometimes the universe tests you or extracts payment before rewarding you.

    Your new home is like a fairytale blessing from a Larsson painting. It is hard work, sometimes, but all things worth having are.

    Much love,

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Again! Your photography is out-of-this-world gorgeous.

    Solid amber, crackly autumn leaves, grass made of faery hoar frost and air that can breathe life in everything.

    Like

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