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Response to haele (Reply #11)

Fri Jul 19, 2013, 08:27 PM

13. actually, I lived that way in 1987

I bought some land - 4.5 acres with a mobile home on it for $4,500 and bought a wood stove and some chimney pieces. Dug my own outhouse pit (which was probably illegal, but the outhouse was already there.) and moved the outhouse on top of it. My heat came from that woodstove and, of course, I had no air conditioning. My water came from a spring that was a quarter mile down hill.

I lived that way for about 13 months, from July 1987 until I went to graduate school in August 1988. I tried to grow my own food, but really had no success at that. It was really dry that summer, even in Wisconsin. I was hauling about 4 or 8 gallons of water up the hill every day to water my garden, but didn't get much besides a few pole beans. I got more blackberries than anything else, and I did not even have to plant them.

I had a car that would not start (I eventually sold it for $75 to a neighbor (I had bought it for $300 two years earlier)) and I had no driver's license. So to get to the stores 7 miles east or 4 miles west I had to walk or bicycle. Dad came with his chain saw and cut up a couple of dead elms, but mostly I got my wood with hand tools - an axe, a bow saw and a wedge and sledge.

Unless you know something about farming (which I didn't), I don't see homesteading as much better than being homeless. Our ancestors in the 1880s had far more practical knowledge than I was ever taught. Part of that may have been my fault - I was a math and science guy who thought that practical stuff like fixing cars was somehow beneath me, and also not really a strength for me.

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hfojvt Jul 2013 OP
WovenGems Jul 2013 #1
hfojvt Jul 2013 #6
oldhippie Jul 2013 #2
OneGrassRoot Jul 2013 #4
hfojvt Jul 2013 #5
IdaBriggs Jul 2013 #3
struggle4progress Jul 2013 #7
hfojvt Jul 2013 #8
haele Jul 2013 #11
LineLineLineNew Reply actually, I lived that way in 1987
hfojvt Jul 2013 #13
MineralMan Jul 2013 #9
hfojvt Jul 2013 #10
MineralMan Jul 2013 #12
hfojvt Jul 2013 #14
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