Thursday, September 25, 2008

Our Ibiza - Chapter 1: The Long Trip To The Beginning

When Steve and I were living in London, we met Alyssa and Dave, some ex-pats from Washington D.C., and became good friends. Dave worked for a top accounting company and had been transfered to London with his job. There were a lot of perks that came with the package, including subsidized housing which helped them afford a beautiful place just off King's Road in Chelsea. It took awhile for them to get used to the quirks that come with living in Britain, but finally they got settled in their life. Just about the time they really felt at home in London, Dave was transferred to Dublin, Ireland. No offense to anyone Irish (Trish), but they were pretty disappointed because there was less to do and they didn't have any friends there. The upside was that their subsidized housing dollar went a lot further in Ireland, so they were able to rent an even better house and equip it with all the amenities, big TVs, stereo equipment, and all the other features that made them feel like they never had to leave the house. They called their place "Our Ibiza" and it became their own personal resort island in the middle of nowhere.
Steve and I have adopted their term to refer to the new house we're building. Anyone that knows us knows that we never thought we'd end up here. We always thought we were destined for New York or Boston or really anywhere but here. But here we are, and since Steve now has tenure, here it looks like we're going to stay. We have been pretty discouraged with housing, and every time we looked the new houses were too cheesy and the old houses were total wrecks, so we stayed in our fluffy white bread house in our fluffy white bread neighborhood and tried to sort it out.
Through looking at real estate listings I found out about a fantastic architect named Dave Brach. We walked through a house he designed and fell in love, and decided that we needed to build our own house to achieve the Ibiza we had been hoping for. Our friends had purchased a house with a double lot in one of our favorite neighborhoods that is narrow, but workable. To make this long story short(er), we purchased the lot and hired Dave to design something for us. We have been working with him for over a year, an this is what we came up with:

We really love that it fits the 1950's - 1960's architecture of the neighborhood but is the modern style we have always wanted. We have been waiting and waiting for the permits so we could start building, and FINALLY it happened. I have said it feels like being pregnant; everyone asks you when your due to begin construction and we could never say since we have absolutely no control over the situation. Our builder said they are going to clear the lot and start excavating this week, so I wanted to write the first of what will be many blogs to make a record of this odyssey we are about to embark on. Only about 95% of people we've talked to have told us they almost got divorced while building a house. Let's hope we can stay in that slim 5%.
And away we go....


Take-a-Wipf said...

Can't wait to see in progress photos.