On the radio the other day I heard a rendition of Istanbul (Not Constantinople) that got stuck in my head and I think I found it. Such a wonderfully swinging tune.
I saw an ad this morning for a company that does pre-fabricated transportable homes, and it got me thinking (obsessing) about home ownership again. You can get a three bedroom house with a similar layout to my current abode for $70,000, or even a four bedroom house with a respectably spacious layout for under $100,000, which makes it possible to get a house on a 1000 square metre block in Callington for well under $200,000, before factoring in various annoying fees, charges, and duties. It suddenly makes it a whole lot more achievable.
Callington isn't my ideal location, mind, but it is very affordable before factoring in the extra half hour lost to driving each day and the almost $3,000 a year more I'd be paying on petrol. It has a freeway exit, and is convenient enough for work. Other drawbacks include being even more isolated from friends and family, and I wouldn't have such an excellent net connection as I do now.
For this 'first' home, I'm looking at blocks that are a minimum of 700 square metres. I'm looking for somewhere I could start up a large garden, both productive and with a rewarding aesthetic, designed on permaculture principles involving a flock of up to 12 chickens, without being right up in the grill of the neighbours.
I need something within 50 minutes of both Belair and Murray Bridge with bias to the Belair side preferable but not required. I'd love to get something in or around Nairne, but the land prices are practically double those in Callington. I'll have to keep my eyes open once I'm in a position to actually buy.
I'm also thinking about chicken tractor designs for this project, and how to make one properly secure from the digging of foxes. With my level of paranoia I suspect it will be difficult. One idea is to trench in a rebar lattice to 750mm or so around each 'station' at which the chicken tractor would sit. Sort of a docking system.This is a hell of a lot of effort, though, and very inflexible. It may be better to incorporate a flat skirt into the design so that a fox would have to dig an extra metre laterally. I'd be perfectly happy to shut the chickens into a secure henhouse each evening, but the idea is that the chooks poop as much as possible where I need it instead of somewhere I have to muck out. It is all about getting the system you set up to do the bulk of the work for you, something extremely important to someone as inherently lazy as I am.
It seems I have written far more than I anticipated. Excellent, less to make up for later.