The Dream, The Plan
Log Home Diary Entry # 1
The dream came before the plan. We are currently in our mid-60s and just retired. We began thinking about retirement and a retirement home about 10 years ago, so this has been a dream long in the making.
We saw an advertisement for a log home and decided to take a look. We drove from the north side of Atlanta to the east side where Southland Log Homes has a model home along I-20. It was a winter day, which for Atlanta meant it was too cold to boat and perfect for browsing. The exterior of the model brought flashbacks of living on Lake Mohawk in Sparta, N.J., in the 1990s. There is a warmth and coziness that transcends time with the look and, we suppose, more the feeling of logs — at least that’s our experience.
When we went inside past the welcoming covered porch, a good image was waiting for us. There was a healthy fire burning in the stone fireplace, which was the focal point of the cathedral-ceilinged great room. There was no fast-talking salesman — just a laid-back young salesperson (young by our standards) who answered questions and gave adequate time for the structure to sell itself. It wasn’t long before we both realized this is a process and not an event — at least for us and our conservative approach toward most decisions.
After looking things over and standing in the great room listening to the hardwood crackle in the fireplace, the salesman said, “Listen harder — what don’t you hear?” There was no outside road noise, even though the model was built adjacent to a busy interstate. We guess that’s one of the characteristics of a log home: quiet.
All kinds of questions start to pop into your head after your first introduction to log-home living:
“What kind of wood do you use, and why?”
“How does this work with no insulation?”
“What about termites?”
“What happens if you have a fire?”
“There are cracks in some of these logs — isn’t that bad?”
“What if the company doesn’t have a floor plan we like?v
“What does it cost to heat this place, given that there’s no insulation in the walls?”
“Do you need a special builder?”
“And, oh yeah, what does it cost?”
(Although we touched on the last one during the visit, there is not a simple answer — darn!)
These and many other questions started to pop into our heads soon after leaving and starting our drive back home. One of us would pose a question, then silence. Then another question. There are, of course, answers to all of these questions and more. But, for us, the seed had been planted. Now, would it take root? Only time would tell.
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