When You're In The Catskills You Couldn't Be Anywhere Else


This is the first post of what we plan on keeping as a regular journal chronicling the house, future projects and the surrounding area with occasional looks at our personal life.

A long, long time ago (like, 5 years, so, I guess not really so long ago) we randomly decided to rent a house in a small town in the Catskills near Phoenicia. We knew nothing of the area other than the name 'Woodstock' and really did no research other than finding a suitable place to stay. Well, "a suitable place to stay" didn't really work out. The power randomly went in and out of the rental house and the hot water stopped working and there was something just creepy about it. I can't put my finger on exactly why it was creepy but the assortment of little doll chairs (no dolls) in the second bedroom certainly did not help.

We braved sleeping there the first night but by the second night, at around 11pm we said NOPE and drove back to the city. That was our first experience with the Catskills. 

It's completely unexplainable but we couldn't get those mountains out of our head. On the drive up we jokingly said, "it would be cool to have a little house up here," but like almost every single "great idea" you've ever had, it was obviously never going to happen. Until it did. 

I would describe us as intuitively impulsive. That is, we like what we like and we know when we know and we act based on that intuition. I like to think it's a trait we developed together because we're usually in complete agreement. And so, impulsively, we decided to buy a piece of _____ house and renovate it ourselves. Did we have any experience or knowledge? Any background in home design or remodels? No, not really. Not really at all. 

Why Tannersville? Because that's where the house was located. It was the first one we saw! We had skiied once at Hunter Mountain and really liked it and it's only two hours from New York City (the sweet spot) so it just.. made sense. We didn't know anything about the area. Didn't know that the house was two minutes to Kaaterskill Falls. Didn't know that our street was a dead end that ended at North-South Lake, the biggest hiking destination in the Catskills. Didn't know a damn thing. 

So again, why Tannersville? Dumb luck. Or, intuitive impulse? All we know is that it is so, so beautiful. Year round. Skiing and hiking and dead dark, starry skies. When we go up there it just feels different, ya know? The air, the trees, the way the sun shines. I'm convinced that the sun and light look completely different everywhere in the world. And so it is in the Catskills, completely different, a whole new world.


Ely FrankoComment