Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Perfect Retreat Home - Cabins and Vacation Houses

When I was young I used to go with my girlfriend to stay in their family cabin in Island Park Idaho.  It was located in this magical kind of place called IP Bills Island - which was kind of literally, a small island on a lake.  I loved everything about visiting there.  Her family had a very authentic and comfortable log cabin.  But we spent very little time in doors.  We spent most of our time sunburned, on the water, in the water, near the water and maybe playing tennis if that got monotonous (which wasn't often).  I was very wistful about the idea of owning such a place and really hoped that my family would have a cabin, or that I could someday have one myself.

Then I grew up and realized part of what made it so great was that when you visit someone else's cabin you aren't really thinking about all the maintenance and cost involved in having a place like that.  (well, and you especially don't think about that when you're 15 years old).  At one point my ex husband and I came very close to buying property to build a summer home.  Really close.  But in the end we hesitated when we realized it would be a commitment that would mean that we would feel pretty obligated to spend every vacation and break utilizing the vacation home.  And we really weren't sure if all that cost was worth it when it meant that maybe you wouldn't feel like you could ever really vacation anywhere else.

I think if you're going to own something like that you need to be pretty sure you're always going to prefer spending your vacations there OR you need to have so much money that it doesn't matter all that much to you if it sits there and doesn't get used because you chose to vacation elsewhere.  I don't think we felt committed to either idea being realistic.  On the other hand, maybe it would have saved my marriage.  I don't really believe that, but I have wondered if it might have made a difference.

Sometimes I am fairly convinced that my life is never going to be one where vacation homes are going to be a part of it.  It doesn't seem like much of a realistic idea.  Plus, I dont even know if I would want that kind of responsibility anyway (see again: always having to use it for vacations).  BUT...

There are times when I remember those summers at my friends cabin so fondly - being sunburned and the smell of pine and the lake water...there are times when I think it would be really nice.

And then there's this - when I'm really stressed and trying to meditate, I either imagine myself at the beach - or I imagine myself in a completely secluded cabin all by myself.

This week I ran across several really excellent vacation houses which I think are just beautiful.  When I image the perfect vacation home or cabin, I imagine something like these:

And then there's this house in Umbria....So lovely...

You know and then that gets me thinking that maybe I shouldn't totally totally give up on the idea altogether.  

You never know. 

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