FYI, I spent the spring of 2018 re-painting the trim of the Cotter house. I scraped a lot of paint. Re-caulked those old windows and re-painted the trim. Everything you see in red was re-done by me. The railing on the front porch was tedious work. I think most of one week of vacation was used and about five weekends. Rewarding to get it done.
I met a lot of Cotter neighbors that I’d never met before. When someone sees you outside working on your house in Cotter, you got honks and thumbs up and often someone would stop to introduce themselves.
The house we bought was many things over the previous 80 years. Most recently it was an antique store and a very good one. The house had been remodeled inside to convert three rooms – including the master bath – into a huge “great room.” In the middle was a nice stand-up desk that was the front counter for sales. It was wired from the basement with an electrical conduit. The previous owners had it built from a gym floor. It was gorgeous.
The previous owners wanted to take it with them it was so beautiful. We held firm in the purchase that it stayed, mainly because it was attached to the floor via the electrical conduit and Internet connection.
My wife was worried that I wanted it for a bar. I didn’t. I thought it would be a great double fly tying desk. There was great lighting from above. The house had track lighting throughout to highlight art on the walls that was for sale.
As we were driving back to Fayetteville after negotiating the price of the home – the official offer would come the next morning – my wife said, “I have a wonderful idea. Let’s keep that desk and you can use it for fly tying.” Oh, how great it is when your wife comes up with the idea you wanted before you have verbalized it. It’s much easier to get to the right conclusion if it’s her conclusion.
I spent many, many nights tying flies there and also had friends sit nearby tying their flies. It was a glorious thing. I wish we could have brought it to Norfork, but I do have a great fly tying desk that Bill Thorne made for me that I brought from Fayetteville. It’s oak and just a gorgeous piece of furniture.
The first summer we owned the Cotter house (and we took possession on Valentine’s Day) there was a week where I stayed there by myself and fished every day. I’d fish early, find a good place for lunch, then take an afternoon nap. Then, I’d find a place to fish in the late afternoon.
Nap time was interesting the first two days. I did not lock the front door. In walked little old ladies thinking it was still an antique store. There I was in my undies asleep on the couch. Are you open? Afraid not. I quickly learned, lock the front door when it’s nap time. And eventually, we just used the back door and left the front door mostly locked.