Monday, October 20, 2008

My Chance to be Alone

Wayne is usually the one who gets to have alone time at the cabin. That's because I frequently travel to the States to visit my mom. But this week it was my turn. I got three glorious days by myself at the cabin. It's not that I don't enjoy my husband's company, it's just that I can get up when I want, do what I want during the day, and head for bed when I want. It's just nice to be on your own for a change.

This trip I got to work in my floating garden. I pulled up the tomato plants, trimmed the herbs and dug up the last of my potatoes from the garden patch on the cliff. My carrots, peppers, zucchini and beets are still producing, so I left them in the ground for now.

The first night was still and quiet. The sky was full of stars and the lake water gently lapped at the float logs, lulling me to sleep. The next night rain drops drummed a soft tune on the roof. This storm wasn't accompanied by wind, so the cabin didn't rock and roll to the rhythm of the music, not like my first week alone at the cabin in 2001.

Back then I didn't know much about float cabin living. A fierce November storm blasted across Coastal BC. Hole in the Wall is usually very protected, except when the southeasterly winds blow hard. Then they come at the cabin face on. That night they were so strong I could hear the clothes line on the front porch singing like a tuning fork. Then two of my four shore anchor cables gave way. I was at the mercy of the wind with no other choice but to ride it out. Frequent satellite phone calls to Wayne, who was back in Los Angeles watching the storm on the Weather Channel, helped me through the night. When things cleared in the morning I was still shaken and scared, but everything had made it through fine. A quick call to John and he was on the way up the lake to tie up the cabin until repairs could be make at a later date. After that Wayne jokingly called me "Frontier Jane." In fact, I became famous under that name in Wayne's first book Up the Lake.

I've come a long way since then. I know what to expect during storms. I know how to secure the cabin and protect myself. But I also know more about the joys of float cabin living as well. Have you ever wanted to live in a remote place? Do you already? Leave a comment, I would love to hear about your experiences or plans. -- Margy


  1. Anonymous1:01 PM

    Alone time must be wonderful. I was trying to remember when I had any. I can,t think of any time that I was alone.When I lived in Montana I would take a book and go up to my rock in the woods and read for a hour or so that is about alone as I ever was.
    I see your little mama is sitting on your porch. Love your pictures.

  2. Hi Betty - Yes, my alone time was wonderful. Yes, Mom enjoys coming to the cabin, especially in the warm months. She's with me right now, but the condo is warmer so she is hanging out there this trip. You told me lots about your Montana cabin. I know it wasn't easy living, but it had lots of rewards. - Margy

  3. It's usually good to spend some time alone. It's great to read some books and just sit in silence sipping tea:)

  4. Wow, what a scary experience you faced back then, Jane! I'd be nailed up on the roof like a scaried cat.
    But by watching your beautiful photos, it's easy to understand why you lov this life style so much!

    Sorry for being off your blog for so long!

    Kisses from Nydia.

  5. Anonymous5:00 PM

    Hi, I was wondering how you get your drinking water? Do you get it from the lake and boil it? Also do you have a flushing toilet on the float or is it a composting toilet?

  6. To answer your questions:

    We bring some bottled water from town to drink, but we also boil lake water to use for coffee, tea and to mix with powdered drink mix. That helps cut down on the amount of water we have to transport to the cabin.

    Right now we have an outhouse on shore. To cut down on trips up the hill (four flights of stairs), we use what we lovingly call "Mr. Pee Bucket" that gets carried up the hill once every day or so. We are looking into getting a composting toilet in the future though. A brand available locally is called Invirolet, but there are several brands to choose from.



We welcome your comments and questions. - Wayne and Margy