As an expat you often feel strong connections to obscure pieces from "home" that you want your kids to grow up with. Like a log cabin in the woods. That one up there, if you can, (and if I turn to the dark side and start selling human organs out of Hong Kong, sure) but the painful bit is that ironically, we really do have one. It's just not here.
Paul's dad built their family cabin back in Canada, and although I do love it, it looks (and feels) kind of like this:
It doesn't help that we watched The Evil Dead the first time I had gone there for the weekend, or that there's an incredibly creepy white crib sitting in the spare room.
but aside from its' more evil qualities, it is Paul's family cabin and we remember it fondly. Though you wouldn't catch me there alone after dark. Ever.
Paul refers to the cabin as "the place where everything goes to die". The TV is sat on top of an older, larger TV. There's more than one dishwasher, though dishes there are to be done by hand, and the last I heard the space toilet was no longer in the house but outside among the trees. Like an outhouse, but with more fresh air. And spectators.
But alas, we don't live in Canada any more and our girls haven't yet been there. So what's a Canadian family stranded in the UK to do? Get the kids their own log cabin, of course!
Buuuuuttttt... Paul is a father now and, similar to his recently developed OCD with turning off lights and maniacally supervising thermostat usage, he now refuses to pay full price for things.
So Paul spent hours, days, weeks scouring the interwebs for a the elusive Little Tykes Log Cabin. Ebay. Gumtree. Amazon... it went on. He entered auctions. He lost auctions. He drove like a maniac down the A40 to check auctions. He accessed the auctions on his phone (safer than rushing home). He pulled over in the car to check the auctions on his phone.
I grew weary of this search. Couldn't we just buy a new one? God no, he said. It was nearly £400. Surely we could get one for £120. They were selling for £80 in Scotland, we could drive to get it. 7 hours. And think of the gas!
I tried to compromise. Could we settle for something other than the log cabin? Why not just buy a cheap £50 Wendy house brand new?
Only the little tykes log cabin would do for Paul and his girls.
A couple of days later, miracle of miracles, Paul found one on gumtree for £130 and it was only a 2 hour drive away. Our Sunday plans were set - the girls were getting their Canadian log cabin!
Only one problem. Paul has every tool under the sun - except a hammer. But he did have a shelf:
The poor guy worked hard building that cabin. I watched. And cuddled the hound.
And in the end? The kids love their cabin.
All three of them.
And, as odd as it sounds, we've now got that little piece of home sitting in our back garden.