The Test of Time
Never judge a book by its cover. That’s what we’ve been told growing up and the statement couldn’t be truer. However, it doesn’t just apply to people, it can also be true of structures that have withstood the test of time. Take a dilapidated cabin for example—while many would consider it an eyesore that should be torn down, others may believe it’s a living piece of history. The walls hold memories and have seen years of events that you couldn’t even imagine.
A Lifelong Dream
For 65-year-old Thomas Fortwright, restoring a piece of property had always been a dream of his. A retired realtor who had worked hard his whole life, the dream of owning a cabin had stuck with him throughout the years. Unfortunately, the opportunity never presented itself…until one fateful hunting trip changed everything.
The Discovery of a Lifetime
One day, Thomas was out on a routine day of hunting when he stumbled upon a rundown old cabin. The windows were shattered, the roof caved in and the walls were a mere shadow of what they used to be. Realizing this could be his opportunity to have the dream vacation home he always wanted, Thomas decided he would try to hunt down the owner.
Is it possible he would be able to find the person?
Finding the Owner
Thankfully, due to his background in real estate, Thomas was able to utilize his network of realtors and track down the property’s owner. The man went by the name of Steve and Thomas quickly built up the courage to call him.
Now, he just had to convince him to sell the cabin…
A Simple Sale
Thomas called the cabin’s owner and asked how much he might be willing to sell it for. Steve told Thomas he could part with it for a $100 on the condition that Steve restored the cabin to its former glory. With a smirk and knowing twinkle in his eye, Thomas agreed. It didn’t take long for the cabin to be signed over to Thomas and he quickly began his work. It wouldn’t be an easy task to restore the cabin, but with a newfound energy, Thomas knew he could do it with perseverance and patience.
A Complete Disaster
At first, Thomas was not sure where to begin. The inside of the cabin was completely destroyed. The rotting wood from the roof had caved into the interior and the walls were a crumbling mess. However, this wouldn’t stop Thomas. He was a man on a mission.
The Road Ahead
Thankfully, the wood on the outside of the cabin had remained somewhat intact. In fact, Thomas thought it had real character. Despite the work involved on the interior, the outside structure had promise. However, there was a lot of work ahead…
Thomas worked very meticulously, cataloging every piece of wood that he currently had and the supplies he would need to finish the job. While he knew he would need new beams for structural support, he hoped he could still utilize the original wood in some capacity.
A Cabin with a View
One of the reasons Thomas fell in love with the cabin was its stunning view. With the beautiful trees and a position right next to the river, he knew it would be a great vacation spot regardless of the time of year.
Adding a Dock
While beginning the restoration process, Thomas decided to add a small side project by building a dock. Since he loved to fish, he thought it would be the perfect companion piece to his new cabin.
From the Ground Up
The cabin would have to be rebuilt from the ground up. Thomas utilized the original pieces of wood to help construct the beams. Despite it being early on in the project, Thomas was thrilled with how it was turning out.
A Higher Foundation
Unlike the original cabin’s schematic, Thomas chose to build the cabin on a much higher foundation. He wanted to have a place to store his hunting and fishing equipment. It would also keep the cabin safe from flooding.
The New Deck
Thomas also decided to add an outside deck to the cabin. He couldn’t wait to sit out on the deck enjoying a cool iced tea on a warm summer’s evening. Just the thought of it motivated him to build even faster.
Keeping the Original Wood
Enlisting the help of his friend Jerry, who happened to be a carpenter, Thomas had the stairs inside the cabin fashioned from the original wood. He believed it added some character and charm to the place.
While it took months of hard work, the cabin was finally completed in time for Thomas to spend his first winter there. Now, he spends every winter at the cabin ice fishing with his family.
From Dream to Reality
It took a lot of hard work, but in the end, Thomas really made his dream a reality. It’s amazing how that pile of rubble turned into a stunning work of art. Do you a have a dream project? What is holding you back?