The property we purchased in Sunbright had had a fire, and a manufactured home had burned to the ground. It was large, a double wide. This is what was left:
It didn't take long to fill that dumpster. I got the worst of the mess out, but there was still tons and tons of debris. Here's a photo after three days of shovelling:
We were going to need another dumpster.
After three days of that filth, we needed a bath. Rachael and Brooke and I walked a mile back down the road to the last large creek we'd passed on the way up. It was far under a bridge and hidden. The water was dark and deep with a slight odor of manure, I guess from cows upstream. But we waded in naked and bathed, and felt a whole lot better.
The next day I took the intact cinder blocks and built a fireplace. It functioned both as furniture, a place to get out of the wind, and to sit around a fire. This is it:
The inspector came out and we passed. The next day the electrical company came and turned on the power. After they left I strung out the wire from the pumphouse to the pole, a good 150 feet. I opened the breaker box to connect the wire, and there was an animal in there! It didn't move, so I knocked it out with a stick. It was dead, but still warm, a flying squirrel. I'd never seen a flying squirrel before. I leaned close and took a photo:
Our dog Mishka got a hold of it and spent hours throwing it around.
I connected the pump, turned on the spigot, and we had water! We celebrated and squirted each other with the hose, and the girls played in their bathing suits. I found that if I stretched out the full length of black hose in the sun for an hour, I could have a quick hot shower. It was luxurious.
All the foliage was changing and very beautiful. Here's a shot of a red maple:
The small white structure is the pumphouse, a 10 x 10 shed built over the well by the original owners who had first developed this property. It's a great place for storing tools.
I noticed acorns raining down where we camped and pelting the tents. They were coming from giant 80 foot white oaks off the creek. I'd periodically snack on the acorns as I went up and down from camp. They were quite mild, with very little tannin at all. And what there was I got used to quickly. They're filling also. After half a dozen my hunger would disappear. Knowing we have an infinite supply of both berries and acorns makes this place seem even more ideal.
I filled a few more bags with trash, and then we loafed and took walks and played games. When the guy came to pick the dumpster up, he told me we had four days of rain about to hit. So I called my wife on his cell, and she came out that night to pick us up in the rain.