Victory : Weekly Photo Challenge

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

I could show you monuments celebrating Victory such as the Niederwalddenkmal monument near Ruedsheim  on the Rhine in Hesse, Germany that celebrates the victory and foundation of the German Empire at the end of the Franco-Prussian war. But I won’t.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

I could show you sporting achievements such as winning the tennis Grand Final doubles but I won’t.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

Instead I’m going to tell you about how I felt victorious (probably really immensely proud) when we took this paddock and built a house. When I say built it was with my own two hands (plus my husbands).

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

I went to technical college and did the owner builders course. This is compulsory in Australia if you are either going to build the house yourself or act as the overseer and have someone build it for you. It teaches you the legalities of what you can and can’t do, and legislative requirements that must be complied with. I did it rather than Roger as he had acted as owner builder for a large renovation we had done and you could not do it again until a number of years had elapsed. We had contractors come in and do the slab.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

Roger got them off side as he measured it up to make sure it was square then night before the pour, found that it wasn’t, then proceeded to give the foreman a lecture about pythagorean theory. I watched the man’s eyes glaze over but they corrected the problem.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

It was a metal frame kit house that we had decided to build. Each frame came pre-made so we only had to get them up in the right place.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

We erected the first (the fourth bedroom) and then another before Roger discovered that I had read the plans incorrectly and the house was not going to fit on the slab. It was momentarily disheartening having to pull down our rooms but better two than the majority of them. This part was easy but when we came to the roof we were a man short. I was neither strong enough to pull the roof trusses up or brave enough to get up and secure them in place. In fact I was a man short. The first truss we tried to erect on a Monday and luckily this was veteran’s day at the golf club. Roger went around and commandeered a group to come and help and we got one up. The next day we tried a different method for the next so it wasn’t so heavy. I still couldn’t manage it, so we got in a mate of Roger’s from the golf club to give us a hand. The ease with which we got the rest up showed us that we needed to have that extra assistance and Randy stayed with us for the rest of the construction.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

Which ended up with a finished product that we did indeed feel victorious. We had overcome the hurdles and achieved, but we weren’t finished.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

There was the garden to go and

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

the courtyard and

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

the walkway between the granny flat (which was already there) and the house and

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

the swimming pool and

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

more garden.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

We left with great sadness saying goodbye to a house and garden that represented much more than a house and garden.

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

© irene waters 2015

In response to the Weekly Photo Challenge 

About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. Commenced a masters by research in 2014.
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16 Responses to Victory : Weekly Photo Challenge

  1. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge-Victory | WoollyMuses

  2. Charli Mills says:

    That does feel like victory, to erect your own house! Sad, you had to leave, but you never give up a victory once gained.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is so true Charli. We are not maintenance people. Once we have achieved our goal it is usually time for us to move on. The garden was massive and we kept it like a park so I was tied to it which stopped being fun. It took Roger hours to cut the lawn despite having a ride-on with a wide cut. But the victory of doing it does remains.

      Like

  3. Sherri says:

    Fantastic achievement Irene, I loved reading of your progress and seeing your beautiful home and grounds in completion. A victorious post in all respects (love the tennis photo too!). Fascinating monument in the first photo…but I’m also glad you decided to write about your beautiful home instead 😉 Wonderful memories for you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • They are great memories Sherri. A real achievement and the thing I liked best about it was that it felt like I had a normal job while we were building it. We’d get up early, pack our sandwiches, leave for work, come home from work, have dinner, put our feet up, go to sleep then get up and do it again the next day, and the next. It’d been so long since I had a job that I didn’t live on site this was a real joy. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. galeweithers says:

    The end result was truly beautiful and what an amazing victory! Well done and excellent take on the challenge aka the victory was indeed yours; thanks for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. joannesisco says:

    Wow – that was really interesting seeing the progression of your build and transformation of the outdoor space. I can imagine how very difficult it would have been to eventually leave it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow, you were really adventurous – you should have been on Grand Designs.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You built that wonderful home and then had to leave? I like that kind of victory so much more than the militaristic kind that leaves behind people tromped upon and a monument erected for all to see. You left a home for someone else to enjoy.

    Liked by 1 person

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