Friday, December 16, 2016

The Village on Sewanee Creek – Our Story

While I was in the midst of purging old letters and documents I had retained while working at the USDA-ARS Sugarcane Research Unit, I stumbled across this letter, dated November 19, 2009, apparently written to myself.

In the field, we had one of those years where the cane fell down badly just as we were starting selection in early September. When the cane goes down, it takes approximately three times as long to slog through it, compared to standing cane; in down cane, selection effectiveness drops dramatically. And on top of this, outdoor temperatures and humidity made selection a most miserable experience for nearly two months solid. On several occasions while I was doing selection, I quit earlier than scheduled because I was getting dangerously close to heat exhaustion. I saw more water moccasins this year during selection than in any year previous to this one. So I have been thinking long and hard about early retirement...” 

Judy discovered Grant and Becky Miller's website decribing The Village of Sewanee Creek.  We decided to drive to Tracy City from Houma LA (about 8 hr), meet the Millers, and check out the area.  Our first visit was in 2008.

Judy in a rustic setting

Campground near Nickajack Lake
Grant and Becky Miller with Judy


We visited two more times before purchasing a 1.4-acre parcel of land, and a investing in a modular home. A modular home seemed most logical to us. The price was reasonable. The home would be sturdy. And the delays normally associated with building a home from scratch would not apply. The home was installed on site in a single day with the help of a million-doller crane. We still needed to have a large porch built in the front and a carport in the rear of the house, which took six months, about five months longer than was projected. The timing of selling our home in Louisiana, and taking possession of our Tennessee home, was less than a week about cutting it close!

What makes our intentional community work?  We meet often. We do projects together on the weekends, and Village Family Forum activities on Mondays, which includes attending a monthly bee meeting in Winchester TN.  And, we are quite flexible, so that our group activities and projects don't become burdensome.

July 4th entertainment at the Commons
Group activity at George & Ginger Millers

Work project at the Commons
Target practice after preparing range

Work project at the Tew's - the shed
July 4th relaxation

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