Communications can be tricky, even in a small space. We recently had a case of the missed communications.
GM went to the county planning office for specific information about what could or could not be done with the lots we were interested in possibly purchasing. When he returned, he began giving me a massive amount of information.
Now a tendency of his is to do what I call “vomit information” at people. It’s just way too much to digest, sort of like going into biology and genetics when a four year old asks “Where do babies come from?” All that four year old wants to know is that they come from their mama’s tummy. Instead, they get far too much information, information that they mostly cannot process.
That’s what was happening there. I was hearing all about the flooded mobile home and addition, which I didn’t care about, since I had no intention of attempting to repair it and live in it. We’d talked about that, I thought we were on the same page. To take a 20 year old mobile home and completely gut it, remodel the interior and then elevate it to meet the county’s requirements was more expensive or at least as expensive as building a small house already elevated, and we would still just have a 20 year old mobile home!
What I THOUGHT he was going to find out was whether we could get rid of that, live in the travel trailer, while we found a suitable house plan and then began construction on a house, a period of several years, not several months, since it would be mostly owner-built. In all of the information he was giving me, there was nothing about travel trailer, and I was confused as to whether we could even get rid of that old mobile home.
I interrupted, a terrible flaw of mine, but after several minutes of what was obviously information going the wrong direction, I wondered…why did we have those long discussions before he went to the county about what we wanted to do and how? What part did he think the travel trailer was playing in this long process? Why was he asking about fixing a trailer house we didn’t want to live in? What about the important stuff, like the well and septic tank and a temporary drop for the travel trailer? Could we do that with the understanding that in the event of an evacuation, we would have to tow the travel trailer out of the area? Could we even get a building permit? What were the restrictions on a septic system?
He didn’t know, and he was highly aggravated with me.
All of that could have been avoided, if we had specified what we were wanting to do on paper, before he went to the planning office.
Our memories are not 100% accurate, which was the original motivation for written language to begin with. We should have stuck with what our ancestors perfected. Written down, there would have been no confusion, no but-what-about-this? problems.
So…we live and learn. He collected a lot of information, but none of it was pertaining to our immediate needs. Now, a return trip is necessary…
So we know, write down the game plan, go and ask specific questions, be clear with each other, and then…maybe…things will get answered.