23thorns – In Answer to Your Questions on Tiny House Living

There’s a great blog on the WordPress site written by a guy called 23thorns, full of witty descriptions on South African wildlife, parenting ups and downs, and all manner of other ravings. I had a nosy at his blog, he popped into mine and read one of my ravings on Tiny House Living, and he wrote a post of his own that posed a few questions about the lifestyle to which I am largely now accustomed.

The answer to why I went (back) into Tiny House Living is in my blog here

My point of view about some of the Pros and Cons of Tiny House Living is here

And the raving that 23thorns read about Tiny House Living is here

And now to his questions.

What do you do when you fight?

The quick answer to that is to live alone. Which I do. And I don’t tend to argue with myself a lot, although it has been known to happen. But that’s another bottle of wine… Having said that, my partner does come and spend time with me quite regularly, and although we rarely argue, that has been known to happen too. And as you say Mr Thorns, the satisfaction of slamming a door is generally denied to Tiny House People, and flouncing three feet across the floor has about as much satisfaction as pushing the ‘End’ button on a cellphone when you’re angry with the git on the other end – it just doesn’t cut it. In such circumstances, it is advisable to have a raincoat and gumboots (Wellingtons to some) and bugger off for a walk to let off a bit of your steam and maybe scare some of the inhabitants of the local duck pond if you’ve really got your knickers in a knot, and yes, chances are in the ‘Four Seasons in One Day’ weather we tend to have in New Zealand on a daily basis, you Will end up looking windswept and interesting

Does your underwear all smell of food?

Well that’s a bit personal, isn’t it?! Do I ask you if your underwear smells of baboons because they occasionally get into your house?

It is a good point though, and one I imagine has been found out through experience by beginner Tiny Housers. When designing your Tiny House, it does pay not to put your sleeping loft directly above your kitchen, if you can possibly help it. Although I’ve seen some pretty cool solutions to that in New Zealand house trucks and buses, including a brilliantly self-driven rustic Expel-air system created by cutting the innards of a small hot water cylinder lengthways, and attaching it to a telescoping chimney, which lowers over the stove, thus drawing any cooking smells (fragrant or otherwise) outside. As for my own setup, due to experiencing a gas explosion in the bus I used to live in (thanks to a rat getting between the inside and outside walls and chewing through the gas pipe combined with just the right mix of oxygen), I have my kitchen out in my awning, so it’s not really an issue for me and my underwear does not smell of last night’s fish and chips.

A New Zealand housetruck. Works of art these are...

A New Zealand housetruck. Works of art these are…

How big is your shed?

Part of the agreement where I’m situated is that I get use of a small storage area in the shed I’m parked next to. Everything I owned was quickly shoved in there when I arrived, and every year I go through that stuff and have a bit of a sort out. Anything I having used or yearned for or even thought about over the last year gets sold, tossed in the rubbish or donated to the nearest goodwill shop. Other Tiny Housers I have heard of have bravely and sensibly, done this Before moving into their Tiny House. In my own defense, I didn’t realize I would be returning to Tiny House Living until about a week before I did so, thus I was somewhat less prepared for it psychologically. It’s taken me a while to detach myself from some of my ‘treasures’, but with each year that goes by, I’m getting my head around it more and more. Anyway, I don’t want to talk about it…

Ever heard of these guys?

Movanners? Roadsnails? Part time Luxury motorhome dwellers? Wash your mouth out!

Do you have tiny cars, too?

Nope. I have what I fondly refer to as a ‘Housecar’. It’s a station wagon cunningly organized so that I can jump in at a moment’s notice and leave town comfortable in the knowledge that I can light a fire, cook, cut down a tree, store water, change my clothes every day for a week if I have to, and sleep quite comfortably. Admittedly, it does help to be a Tiny Person when it comes to that. I’ve actually slept very comfortably in my previous house car – a hatchback – after a night of erm, overindulgence, at a friend’s place and got up in the morning having had a wonderful night’s sleep. Many Tiny House people are also greatly advantaged in that the gear they use for everyday life can also double as emergency equipment. Which isn’t a silly idea in New Zealand where we have any number of live volcanoes, experience at least one earthquake somewhere in our country every day and are on constant alert for tidal waves. Within two weeks of moving into my Tiny House, I had to flee from my home twice and go hang out on someone’s doorway who lived several feet higher than I do, due to tsunami warnings. There’s no lack of excitement around here.

I truly hope I haven’t frightened your wife off her pending visit to our beautiful isles…

Do vandals ever move your house while you’re sleeping?

Funny you should ask. That has indeed happened to me once. Not by a vandal though – by my partner-at-the-time. We were parked up at a large gathering of house truckers (a unique New Zealand eccentricity) and attended a ‘Gypsy Ball’ on a Saturday night, an affair that was well attended, musically fabulous and once again involved a modicum of ‘indulgence’. I opened one eye the next morning, in our sleeping loft, to find there was a tree branch poking in the window that had a little bird on it serenading me with a chirpy but overly enthusiastic morning song. Sadistic little shite. When I looked out, the scenery had changed completely and I had no idea where the heck I was. Turned out my partner had woken at some disgusting hour of the morning and decided there was a much better parking spot half a mile yonder, sparked up the motor and drove the bus there while I slept through the whole thing. It creates an interesting sensation, to say the least, in a hung over brain, and it’s quite surreal for a few minutes until your brain cells are holding hands again and re-piece your internal mapping device and you put together where you are in relation to planet earth.

Otherwise, the answer is no.

Shut up, you cheerful little shite!

Shut up, you cheerful little shite!

So I hope that answers your questions satisfactorily, Mr Thorns. Any else, you but need to ask and I’ll try to enlighten you as best I can.

Have a great day – I insist.

Housetrucks. Some people are just ridiculous about it.

Housetrucks. Some people are just ridiculous about it.

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