if you asked me what the best experience of the past few years has been, nothing really comes close to building a cabin with my aunt and uncle. maybe 'best' doesn't really do it justice, most formative might be better, before a few weeks stretched over a couple seasons I wouldn't've considered myself very handy. I had spent a whole lot of time focused on sports, or school, or writing, or whatever. so learning how to fell trees and strip bark, cut logs into boards and use a chainsaw like an extension of my arm- those things hadn't much crossed my mind. at least not outside the part of me that romanced the idea of being a real man; a provider, a builder, the resourceful kind who could fix what needs fixing and make what needs making. that time out on the trap-line working was a bit of an epiphany for me. about self-reliance, work-ethic and focus, about attention to detail, commitment and problem solving. so now, whenever I pass a little structure like this, I think about building my own one day soon. spend procrastinating evenings on drawings of the cabins for tomorrow, off on my own slice of the world. imagine my kids playing with the water somewhere in the distance, imagine a treehouse and a tire swing, a dock with a couple canoes tied up. I imagine knowing it'll happen, knowing because of a few weeks in my uncles valley, a long way from anything, listening, learning, following instruction and building from dawn till dusk.