Some of you may have read the post I wrote in March about the disaster that befell my poor 81-year-old mother: there was a landslide at her house. Now the house is for sale, and I thought I would post some photographs of it by way of saying goodbye – and who knows, maybe attracting a buyer with plenty of cash!
The house was built in 1910. At that time it was the farmhouse for a dairy farm. It sits high along the bluff of Oaks Bottom wildlife reserve, along the banks of the Willamette River. Recently, one of the great-grand-daughters of the man who built the house stopped by to introduce herself. She told my mother that the cattle used to meander down the paths on the bank to graze along the grasslands by the river. When I lived there, my bedroom was on the top left as you look at the photo above. Here is the view from the window in “my bedroom,” looking out over the river to the West Hills:
My bed was by the window. In the summertime, I used to fall asleep next to the open window (it does have a strong screen!), and the sounds of the frogs singing below would send me to sleep. Here is another view across the river:
Here is the dining room, which also looks out across the river:
My father made a bay window and built a deck outside. Before the landslide, the deck was shaded by trees. Since the photo below, the deck has been taken off the house.
The house is about a 20-minute bus ride from downtown Portland, which you can see from the house. I occasionally walked to downtown from the house when I was younger. The kitchen still has its farmhouse character, I think:
And here is my mother in the living room, in the evening. My father carved the fireplace front from a felled cherry tree.
As you can see, the house has kept many of its original features. I do hope that someone will be able to buy it who will love to live in it, like I did growing up. However, there is the problem of the landslide. It hasn’t damaged the house in any way, but the bank will need to be stabilised. The paths where the cows wended their way down to the wetlands have all slid to the bottom, along with the trees and bushes that grew along them. Oh the power of relentless rain!
I suppose it’s possible that someone may buy the house, raze it to the ground, repair the landslide and build properties on the land. However, at 81 years of age, there isn’t much my mother can do to raise the money to repair the landslide herself. So we will have to let the fates decide. If anyone reading this is interested in finding out more about purchasing this wonderful house and property, contact Alyce Irving on (503) 667-1200 or at email@example.com. There is a price range rather than a set price, and “the price range is to offer options on the remediation of the slope”.
Edit (5 July 2011): Alyce can best be reached on her cellphone (503) 888-4260. The house is listed on the Portland RMLS, ML# 11243495.
I am going to end on a hopeful note. Here is a photograph I took from my mother’s dining room in April. If you look closely, there are mother-of-pearl colours in the wispy clouds in the centre:
Bless her, my Mom is ready to get on with the next chapter of her life – perhaps not at the top of a hill this time. I’ll let you know how things turn out!
Thank you, house.