We bit the bullet this year and replaced the crumbling facade of a deck that wrapped around our cottage. We paid a hefty price -- not just financially -- but in time. We missed out on the six weeks at the lake during which our piece of paradise was reduced to a construction site.
I kept the faith; good things are worth the wait. It did not disappoint. Jim was the elfin-like local contractor we entrusted our vision with. A roughly hand drawn sketch, a quick chat and a deposit and he was off to the races. He problem solved, improvised and enhanced - and of course went over budget. When I had asked him on the phone how much above the quote the final costs were, he replied, "you take a look at it for yourself - and then you tell me."
We bolted from the car and down the pathway to see the results of Jim's labour. At first glimpse of the solid wooden structure, I was ecstatic. We rounded the corner of the cottage and the forest came pouring in. I did a happy dance for the whole world to see. It was the first time in my life that I didn't wince at or begrudge an overspend. The glass panels that edge the deck provide a wide open vista of the lake and the forest that surrounds us.
I predict many summers of enjoyment from the lofty perch in the trees, close to the birds and away from the fray. The novelty hasn't worn off. I am fortunate - and I know it. And for that, I am ever grateful.