Off The Grid

Living off the Grid on a west coast island

somewhere in between

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When you are building on an island, there is no such thing as running to the store because you need four more porcelain tiles, one more bag of mortar or one more piece of cement board. Quite often your neighbour can come to your aid with a left over bit from his finished project. This weekend Vicki and Michael came to our aid with a 22X46″ piece of cement board that we needed for the fireplace. (thank you!) But more often than not the project is set aside until after a trip to town.

We brought a very large barge over in February, at the beginning of our project and we have since been able to avoid any more barges. But the time has come and we have had to bite the bullet and schedule three more. That should be it.

We have a really great service in town. A great guy (and a not unnecessarily very strong guy) in an amphibious barge goes to the scheduled stores and picks up the items on our list. He then launches on a nearby boat ramp and brings the materials to our boat ramp at high tide. Tomorrow’s barge is all the little bits we need to finish a lot of on going jobs.

The list is funny and indicative of our unfinished jobs.

2 bags Portland Cement, 2 sheets of plywood, 6 sheets of drywall, 1 bag of mortar, 40 2X4’s (8ft), 60 2X4’s (12 ft), 5 bags of insulation…. you get the idea… we just need a little bit more to finish a few of our ongoing jobs.

Also, on tomorrow’s barge is the big Solar Power upgrade shipment… Very exciting to see these state of the art items arrive… You would be surprised how much money it costs to be off the grid… At the end of the day… ten years down the road it pays off monetarily but we will reap the rewards immediately when we don’t have to bring as much propane over this winter and can enjoy the luxury of a big fridge. E is just thankful he doesn’t have to bring the eight 123 pound batteries over on our boat.

Our second barge is on Wednesday. The new Ikea kitchen is coming on that barge. E will be up to his ears in adult lego when the 198 !!!!! boxes of Ikea kitchen arrive on our doors step. I will be so happy to have somewhere, finally, to put all of our stuff!!!!!!!!!

The third barge won’t come until September with our new fridge and a few pieces of furniture.. Then that’s it.. The house will be pretty much done…

An optimist would say the first week of September, a realist would say the end of September… I am

somewhere in between….

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Author: Off Grid Islanders

We are a retired couple living on an off grid island on the West Coast

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