In Vancouver, life is a bit different for Catherine and Wayne. The two are artists, and have been married for over 3 decades now. Their home is an interesting place, not just because they’re artists. It’s because they don’t live on land.
And no, I don’t mean they’re mermaids.
Catherine and Wayne reside in Freedom Cove, which they built themselves.
The whole structure has everything they need, all a good distance away in the water. Freedom Cove is tethered to nearby terrain, close to the shore of Vancouver Island.
45 minutes away from the nearest mainland residences is pretty remote by a lot of people’s standards, but that’s just how these two like it. And with a dance floor, lighthouse, and garden, there’s a lot to like. All of this is floating on the water.
The entire structure weighs 5oo tons or 1 million pounds as estimated by Wayne. Oh, and he built the whole thing with just handsaws and hammers. By hand.
Power tools? Never heard of ’em. This whole place was built the old-fashioned way.
“I know every board and nail by name.”
That’s a herculean demonstration of DIY, if you don’t mind me saying. Wayne makes it pretty clear where his determination to do this came from.
“I’ve been building tree forts since I was 7. I said ‘Well, dad, I’m putting a tree fort in the ocean.”
Despite the relative remoteness, Catherine and Wayne have everything they need.
This side of Vancouver is teeming with life, flora, and fauna alike. Birds and all sorts of fish can be found in nearly every direction, so fishing is naturally, quite rewarding for Wayne. British Columbia is home to Rock Doves, Starlings, Peacocks, and beavers. It’s also got Salmon, Coastal Cutthroat trout, and Rainbow trout.
Should the weather ever be less than ideal, Wayne can also fish from inside the house, via a small trap door in the floor that lets him access the ocean. He can fish all day if he wanted to.
It’s quite a lot like those survival projects you do in Minecraft. Did you ever think you’d see someone doing it for real? Well, now you have.
When asked if they ever get seasick, Wayne responds by saying that when he goes to town, he actually gets “landsick”. Cheeky.
Life as an artist won’t get you commissions for pieces left and right. Hardly so, and Catherine and Wayne know this to heart. Subsistence is the way to go, as Wayne remarks that buying real estate is way out of the question. Artists are always having to do things themselves, huh?
But it paid off, and now they’ve been living here for 24 years. “I can’t imagine living any other way”, says Catherine.
Plus, I’m willing to bet that at least some people would envy living the way these two do.
Every trip out to town is a boat ride, and every day is spent surrounded by serene waters and the gorgeous ecosystems of Vancouver, British Columbia. Unconventional living space indeed, but a real cool one at that.
You can watch Wayne and Catherine talk about their home down below.
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