Saturday, May 12, 2012

Tiny Houses

These little bitty houses are intriguing to me.

I've watched YouTube videos about little houses... downloaded lots of pictures of little houses... thought about how it'd be nice to simplify into a little bitty house... admired the little tiny house our friend Nick lived in before he joined the Navy. I just like those little houses and I like thinking about how luxurious you could make a small space simply because it is small.

Today we took Ashley, my older daughter, her husband Matt, friends Martha and James and baby Olive, and my mother and mother-in-law to Moreland's Restaurant for an overdue dinner celebration of Ashley's birthday. Moreland's is on the Gasconade River, across from where the old Highway 63 North bridge (past Vichy, before Vienna) was blown to bits decades ago after they built the new highway. Down the cliff from Moreland's, is my father- and mother-in-law's little place on the river.

My father-in-law, Alton Roberts, was a man who knew how to live and he did just that, everyday of his life, whether he was healthy enough to or not!... he never wasted a minute. Sadly, he passed away in the late winter this year. After dinner this evening we toured, probably for the last time (my mother-in-law is selling it), Alton's little cabin -- his own tiny little home.

When I first knew Alton, over 30 years ago, I remember him talking about wanting a place on the river one day. Alton worked for everything he ever had; nothing was given to him. He was a hard-working, hard-living  bulldog of a man and though it took years for him to achieve this dream, there was no doubt that he eventually would have his place: His cabin on the river.

Alton and Brenda with great-grandson Micah this past Christmas
Including today, I can count on one hand the number of times I visited his place at the river. Our girls stayed there with their granddaddy and grandmama for fishing trips and camping when they were younger, but mostly the place was Alton's. It was his little private world of sorts, I think. He had his river-life and his river-friends and his river-schedule and his river-ways. He had his own river-family too... Alton was beloved by the people who knew him and the river people likely knew him best.

Alton's little cabin is a lovely, simple place. Quiet but not too isolated. I believe he mostly would do his living out doors there: the porch is as big as the cabin. My mother-in-law said they had to have the mattresses special made to fit into the tiny bedrooms (smaller than a full, larger than a twin). Yet, there is everything a person could need. Could even want.

A tiny house for this big bulldog of a man. This strong man. This good and decent and kind and honest man.

We miss you, Alton. We know you don't have a small house anymore. Oh, but what a fine, fine home you have now.

It was an honor to know you. I love you dearly and can't wait to see you again.



Gerrels said...

What a nice post! I loved getting to read it, and I wish I could have toured his little cabin one last time too!

AR said...

Grandaddy is an inspiration to live a simpler life, enjoy the little things, find humor in everything, not to take yourself too seriously, to persevere, and to know that you are stronger than you think you are. He is missed by many.