It is the pipe dream of my generation: go back to the land, eschew commercialism in all forms and get down with the earth… and the Earthlink, of course (how else will the world at large know about the wonderful rural, non-technical life you’ve created??)
I fell for it in my 52nd year… signed the counter offer on the house on my birthday, on a house that was created in 1955, just like I was (such signs are portents, or else really silly reasons to buy an old house)… in a town with such a cute name that I cringed when I told my savvy city friends (and was astounded at how many were immediately envious), a town with one main street… a town without a coffee shop! (alright - one drive-through espresso place… but for us metro Oregonians, that’s like the only rib joint in town being a Tony Roma’s!) And I grew up in New Jersey, so I know what you guys are thinking about now -- stop laughing! Espresso is a necessity. So immediately, I made a list of all the things I’m giving up (and how far a drive they actually are… just in case). I listed all the things I’m gaining (the opportunity to personally weedwack the waist-high weeds on this neglected place being near the top ten -- yes, country air has already addled my brain), and compare the two, ostensibly to be sure it’s balanced, but really just to smirk at my foolish friends who feel chained to their lifestyles (this will come back to haunt me, I predict).
But the road is never smooth -- first things I run into are the well and septic issues. I was looking for a place that was as independent as possible (with an eye to being mostly off the grid), and this place is great for that… but the well has bacteria and the septic tank is cracked… I know the leak wasn’t too bad, because the inspector confessed to me that he’d eaten all the remaining raspberries before he realized they were growing over the tank and we have not received a lawsuit. We are now in negotiations to get all that dealt with before I take ownership, but just to be sure, I’m getting a water filter and reading up on septic systems -- I suppose all of this appeals to the engineering part of me, the part that does like to tinker with (simple) machines. Before they went nano, I used to switch out my own computer hardware, tho I never built a system from scratch, and I understand the basics of a car (minus the computerized crap), a house electrical system and plumbing. I just know that I’ll be learning a lot more soon…
Anyway, welcome to my new blog about the joys and insanities of living a self-sufficient life!