This past weekend two of my friends left their cozy warm houses and flew to Seattle for our annual girls weekend. They willingly left the comforts of home to stay with me in an off-grid cabin on the beach on the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
This shack has the most amazing view. There were cliffs behind, a rocky beach just off the deck and a beautiful expanse of ocean that lay ahead. In the distance we could see an outline of Vancouver Island that sits just across the strait.
At night the darkness that covered the entire area was simply amazing. Since none of the cabins on the beach had electricity, and there were no stores or buildings for miles, the darkness of the ocean and sky lay like a heavy blanket on us. The darkness was almost paralyzing in the cabin but outside it was so dark on the beach that the number of stars visible overhead was amazing. There were so many stars that each constellation seemed to run into the next. I've seen stars before but this sight was almost magical.
The cabin/shack was equipped with a little kitchen, bathroom, one bedroom, and a small living space. There were three comfortable beds and the entire front of the cabin was lined with windows, so that you can enjoy the views from the comforts of the cabin.
Heat for the water and the cabin itself was provided by a large wood burning stove. I'm not exactly sure how I thought the cabin would be heated, but I didn't envision the amount of work that would go in to keeping us warm! There was wood chopping, firing building, and hour after hour of adding wood. Thankfully, the ladies I was with are camping rockstars because I am not sure I would have ever got a fire started if left to deal with it on my own. My lovely friends each got up in the middle of the night once or twice and added wood to the fire so we didn't freeze to death.
The stove and fridge were propane, so we were able to keep things cold, although just sitting the ice chest outside proved to keep things colder than the fridge, and the stove provided us with the ever important means for boiling water to make coffee. Making coffee takes forever when you have to boil the water and then pour it in the press and then wait for the coffee magic to happen.
The whole weekend was awesome and I would definitely return to the little cabin on the beach, however, I am incredibly grateful that I didn't grow up where this was the norm and my touch of the button coffee this morning was just about the best cup I've had in a long time.