Literary Cottage Log 5: Practicing Permanence

Literary Cottage Industry

May 18 2021

Gold Tape
We are dreaming of moving to a cottage in the woods. So what are we waiting for?

Dear Reader,

I want to finish my current home before starting a new one.

A few years ago, we moved here, to this empty flat in Edinburgh from our furnished rental across town. Our first furniture: a new pink sofa, mattress, bed. Then a table and folding chairs, IKEA.

We spent a year on hardwood floors. Then, visiting a cottage in Mull with a fluffy rug sparked the thought that we should get one too. A post-trip souvenir rug. In a cottage in Wick, we curled up in big wooly blankets, and decided to order a big wooly blanket for our pink sofa.

We painted mountains on the wall, built our own bookcase, found furniture on the street, bought some secondhand: sturdy, matching chairs for the table! Those are crofting chairs, we said with starry eyes. We added a shower to a tub, boarded up the former – leaky – shower room into a podcast studio.

There’s more to do. Pictures to hang – still! I want to wallpaper the entryway with tree print. I want to organise Snug’s things neatly: to fancy dog owner perfection.

Some of these completed projects will come with us to the cottage. But others will stay on the walls, be painted over by the next resident, all part of the cycle of city living, like the mysterious patch of bright purple paint we inherited in the corner of our bedroom.

Our new microwave has a dial, and makes a satisfying DING! Next we seek a fridge with a less aggressive hum. I’m hoping for pastel.

We learned how to shop for appliances, how to paint walls, tile the bathroom, hang shelves. How to arrange a room, in our style. We raised our bed into a loft, created a movie den underneath, hung water bottles with climbing gear.

Here in our pre-croft home, we practice permanence. My life so far has been hopping from home to home, and if the next one will last as long as we need, to plant perennials, and grow trees from seeds, we ought to master interiors to make it as pleasant as possible.

Until the Next Chapter,


P.S. Please write back. I would love to hear your story too.

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