March 9th is Swamp Castle Day.
My father's family hadn't owned houses for generations. When my grandparents retired they bought a house. My mother's mother returned to Nova Scotia after she retired and her kids were married. She built a house in the orchard of the old family farm.
My husband's parents owned a house that they inherited form his grandmother. But I didn't have a history of land ownership. It never occurred to me that I should own a house.
When my aunt died she left me enough money for a down payment. I was reluctant to launch into the process of looking for a house to buy. My daughter was engaged at the time to a young man who could not understand my reticence. His family had been in the same house for generations. I guess I didn't either.
So with Mark at our side, my husband and I looked at many housed I didn't want to own. One was filled with cat figurines and cats. One had a radio system piped into every room. One had a bit of pine board with a selection of types of barbed wire by the front door. Many seemed built of cardboard and scotch tape. Some had really weird floor plans. After months of searching, to the point that I was ready to give up, we found the prefect house. It was in a town not a development. I could walk to stores. It was less than two miles from my job. Most of all we loved the house. No one was living in it when we decided it was the house for us.
Once our bid had been accepted we went to do a walk thorough before closing. I was standing looking out the master bedroom window at the ancient trees. My daughter came up behind me and I said, someday this will be yours. Without missing a beat, she said, "What the curtains?"
So our new home became Swamp Castle. The day happened to be my aunt's birthday, the one who had left us the money to buy the house. March 9.
If you have no clue what I am talking about get a copy of Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
Happy Birthday, Auntie Kay.