The Boatyard

The first few weeks of this project zoomed by, almost as if someone was holding the fast forward button on us. We worked round the clock honestly. Last people to close up shop and roll out of the boatyard many nights. Taco stand veggie burritos for lunch and dinner, coffee in the morning, energy drinks at night. Healthy, no. Filling, yes. We were on a mission.

A wonderful thing about building in an industrial neighborhood is there is no noise ordinance. We blast the stereo and run the chop saw till our little hearts are content and no one thinks twice of it. Before the chilliness of fall had set in, we had left the garage door wide open most days, welcoming the neighbors and passersby of the area.

I think the combination of an ever-friendly golden retriever and the novelty of a ‘tiny house’ where a boat should be, made most people stop by or at least look twice. Some people’s curiosity was satisfied just knowing what it was, others had lots of questions. The gentleman renting the house right next door didn’t have many questions, but did say he was glad we weren’t growing marijuana.

Some people were working on projects of their own in the boatyard. The boatyard, as far as I understand it, has two main things going on really. It has the marina part where people moor their boats and some live-aboard. And then it has dry storage. The dry storage is full, very full. This is where sea-weathered sail boats seem to have been plucked from the Sound and balanced atop blocks and tripods. Some look all but forgotten with tattered tarps anchored over them, while others gleam with fresh new paint.

South Park Marina

South Park Marina

The shop space we use shares a wall with the shop space the marina uses. We get to see the boatyard crew often and they are always helpful. There’s Chad who shuffles boats around as easily with a forklift as one might drive a Civic; Ewan, a dog-lover and fast favorite of Beau’s; and Steve, head boss of the marina, who didn’t even bat an eye when Kalib told him he would have to ‘dismantle’ part of the shop we’re in to get the tiny house out. I think his exact words were something like, “Well, you look like you know how to build things.”

There’s also the other people working in the boat yard. Like Libby, who was bi-coastal, working on her house boat on her weekends here in Seattle before flying back to NY for work. Or Todd and Heather, a couple refurbishing a beautiful sail boat. I tell you, just when we think what we’re doing is hard or back breaking- a quick tour of their project re-energizes us and reminds us that others are neck deep into these labor-of-love kinds of projects too.

But we tell you all this so you have a bit of an idea of the great community we have gotten to know and be a part of while we build this tiny house. We hope, in the next month or so, to be moving the tiny house out of the shop and into a dry slip where we will be able to complete the exterior of the house. As it stands right now, there are about 3″ or about 1.5″ on each side of the tiny house to get it through the garage door. So things like siding and windows will be installed after it’s moved outside.

More to come 🙂


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