The long wait

 While wildfires threaten Yellowknife in the north and Kelowna in the west and thousands of Canadians have been forced from their homes, we remain displaced by choice. We left our former Okotoks property on July 28th and have spent time in Crowsnest Pass, High River and now, the Grande Prairie area. 

The SEED HOMES team in south Calgary has been working through the construction part of the process.

Delays have been experienced along the way because of complications and question marks with the development permit process and with the windows supplier. Frankly, there are questions and conundrums we don't have answers to yet, which makes a realistic timeline an impossibility to predict. 

Our anxieties are rooted in several things. On top of the list is that Heather leaves for Italy on September 12th. We had hoped to be settled in our new home and studio well before that date. Based on everything we know, that feels like a long shot at this point. Second, we have clients that are patiently waiting on commissions that can't be started until the studio is done. Finally, we have Ideal Protein clients that are also patiently waiting for us to get our clinic up and running again. 

Everyone has been incredibly understanding of our predicament. We can't thank them enough. We've also been welcomed at my sister and brother-in-law's place and feel very comfortable here. In that sense, we are greatly blessed. 

Heather and I are waiting patiently for some wins. The approval of the development permit will trigger the installation of the engineered screw piles on the land; trenching for sewer, water and power; and the installation of the house. The studio will get placed near the very end of the process. 

What have we learned through this experience? Best laid plans are well intentioned, but not practical. We might have been further along renting an interim home while the build happened. Unfortunately, we made all our plans on dates that were too tight. It's left us scrambling to make adjustments to our accommodations and our business. The other thing to embrace is to expect the unexpected. There is no way we could have predicted that the window supplier would have been such a challenge, particularly because of the size of that particular contract. We also discovered that getting basic services to the lot - water and sewer - is not as easy as it should be, particularly as we are in a mature area of town. Thankfully, a meeting with the Town of High River is going to happen early next week to work through those details.

We are trying to roll with things, but there are days that are harder than others. There has only been one other time when we were displaced this long, and it was during the Fort McMurray wildfire evacuation of 2016. The length of time of this displacement might be similar in the end. Much like walking through our doors in Fort McMurray for the first time after being away so long, walking into our new house is going to cause waves of relief and joy. 


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