7WB5- Take 3

Where are you and where are you going?
7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Aug 29, 2016 9:21 am

@llorona: Thanks. I just keep telling myself if Barbara Kingsolver can kill a turkey, then I can kill a rabbit. We'll see.

I am back to my usual good mood :D I am currently amusing myself with the notion that I have been transferring units of energy from my aging affluent swains to my perma-culture project for the good of the children of the energy-deprived dystopian future. The Cowboy suggested that the Peacemaker was taking advantage of my compassionate nature, and then admitted that he has also been taking advantage of my compassionate nature, so I am no longer feeling guilty about mooching resources and breaking hearts (or masculine ego-structures :roll: .)

I did manage to stay overnight at my camper a few weeks ago, but felt a bit spooked once darkness fell. So, when the Cowboy texted, I asked him to come spend the rest of the night with me. It was surprisingly quiet and peaceful. I was expecting some noisy teenage hordes, at the very least, but all I could hear was the sound of crickets, and my dorky companion playing Angry Birds on his phone.

Slowly, but surely, I am getting the camper and the garden stocked for survival. Yesterday I completed construction of the berm at the back of the swale where I am planning to plant apricots and hazelnuts, and I hauled and stowed away the last of my pile of gardening paraphernalia. I could hear the Iraqi-American children playing in the yard behind me and the amazing foot-stomping, hand-clapping performance of a gospel choir from the tiny recently-reopened church right across the street. Around the corner, I spotted a group of 4 attractive young hipsters shooting a scene for a film against the backdrop of an old brick building covered with artful graffiti. My neighborhood is nothing but chaotic edge upon chaotic edge. I love it!

Somehow in the course of my career in retail arbitrage, I ended up with half-ownership of a very large propane powered wok. I offered my sister a regular wok in exchange for her half ownership, and I am going to haul it over to the camper today, along with a few basic staple cooking supplies that don't need immediate refrigeration such as olive oil, vinegar and eggs and a big tank of propane. The community center was shut down for a couple weeks for renovation, but now that it has re-opened, I will have access to a decent shower. So, I think it might now be the case that I might actually be able to survive at the camper, especially since I do plan on bus-bike-tent camping in a warmer region of the country during the coldest part of the year. I have created a spreadsheet to track expected caloric production of currently established crops/beds, and I'm only at the level of being able to meet around 16% of my caloric needs (8% of my goal) once my trees and shrubs reach maturity. However, I am at the place on the curve of this project where things should start clipping along rapidly, now that the initial make-more-of-a-mess phase has reached completion. Planting in the fall, rather than the spring, in Michigan has historically been a pretty iffy gamble, but these-a-days it is almost impossible to predict, so I will probably purchase quite a few more trees and shrubs on severe clearance, and hope that they will have time to establish themselves.

EdithKeeler
Posts: 411
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:55 pm

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by EdithKeeler » Mon Sep 05, 2016 9:45 am

7Wannabe5: you and your journal were on my mind this morning. I'm thinking about buying a parcel of urban land myself to do something similar to what you're doing, though on a smaller scale, I think. But it occurred to me that I hope you're keeping good notes about your urban farm project--I think it would make a great book that people would be interested in reading.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 2:42 pm

@EdithKeeler: I am keeping my usual hodge-podge of notes and spreadsheets, but I don't plan on writing any gardening essays for at least another 2 life skins (13 years.) Good luck with your project! I think everybody should have a garden and a library.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 6:17 pm

Well, it was a long, barely-treading-water sort of winter for me. After the crash-burn of my attempted practice of polyamory, I had major crash-burn of my book business, several terrible hacking cough sort of viruses, caretaker issues with my aging, mentally-unstable mother, and half my face was temporarily paralyzed.

However, I am now feeling better, have resolved some of these problems, and today was a lovely, sunny day I spent planting peas and cabbages, and just about anything else that can be put in the ground in Michigan in April. Anybody who wants a salad in a few weeks, just stop by my camper, but be sure to bring your own bowl, because I have yet to begin digging up clay out of the ground and firing pottery.

The odd situation I find myself in is that I have 3 different "jobs" and 3 or 4 (if I include the fact that I have housemate and book-business contract with my sister)different "partnerships" or relationship contracts currently, but I'm not sure if they add up to more or less than the more conventional situation for one of my peers, and which was also my situation for a number of years, which would be practical/social/sexual/emotional-monogamous-marriage-contract-with-husband and full-time-career-contract-with-employer. I have noticed that it is true that when you have a 3-legged stool, and one leg breaks, although it is distressing, it isn't as devastating as having your one and only support in a given realm pulled out from under you.

Actually, that said, my current situation is more like both of my stools have one leg that is solid but won't bear my whole weight, one leg that is wobbly, and one leg that is just a half-leg. So, I do have to either make some changes or make some repairs.

I could easily financially support myself just substitute teaching, but I only enjoy it if I limit it to approximately 2 days/week. I could still easily support myself with my book business if I went at it a bit more gung-ho, and was willing to undertake the tasks of storage and shipping again, but I'm not sure if I want to do that either. I might enjoy working at my garden-project full-time, but it is still cash-flow negative. I am considering doing something else that would make use of my math degree/skills, but I am very loathe to over-commit in that direction.

My BF is more like the sort of transitional/medium-term BF you might have in high-school before you both go off to college, or some similar situation. He is moderately open to the possibility of re-opening our relationship. There is a very good possibility he will take a job overseas in the next year or two. The man who adores me is married, and although his marital contract was polyamorous, his wife is only semi-open to the possibility of the renewal of our relationship. The man who is still exuberantly partnered with me on my permaculture-project is now living with another woman whom I consider to be a new friend. So, my BF is providing some level of practical/social/sexual/emotional support. My perma-culture partner is currently providing mostly practical support, and the man who adores me is currently providing mostly emotional support. My sister is providing some practical support, and sisterly emotional/social support.

Anyways, although I do sometimes feel like throwing in the towel and just finding myself a career and a husband, it does oddly feel like that would be "throwing in the towel" for "ME" (not judging choices of others even if I may come off offensive/defensive at times.) In fact, my druthers in the moment might be to take on my next new-new choices/adventures, while maintaining some aspects of most of what I currently have in place. For instance, I would really like to develop a lifestyle module that would work for me in some sunnier/warmer locale for a couple months in the winter, because I think it would really benefit both my mental and physical health, and I am considering the possibility of a year sabbatical from my 7 year permaculture-project since I could leave it in the care of either my project-partner and/or a family member and/or hired-help-street-urchins at the point of development I should reach by the end of this gardening season. One possibility might be traveling with my BF to whatever overseas assignment he accepts next. I could teach ESL and bunk with him for free.

I will post some updated photos of my project soon! :D

halfmoon
Posts: 537
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:19 pm

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by halfmoon » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:53 pm

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Sun Apr 23, 2017 6:17 pm
One possibility might be traveling with my BF to whatever overseas assignment he accepts next. I could teach ESL and bunk with him for free.
Are you at all concerned that depending on your BF for a place to live overseas could upset the balance of your relationship?

I'm glad to see you posting in your journal again. I've missed lurking here. :D

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:03 am

@halfmoon: I wouldn't be concerned about uncomfortable balance of power for a short, clearly-bounded interval. All the other functional pieces or modules of my lifestyle would be waiting for me wrapped in cotton if/when I returned. Also, I've relaxed a bit with my BF since we discussed the possibility of re-opening our relationship. Our best compatibility is at the level of affectionate, amusing companionship, and we've already successfully taken many short trips together. Some simple things like the fact that we have similar taste in food and music, similar level of health/fitness, and extroversion/introversion makes getting along in a travel situation fairly easy and enjoyable.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Wed May 24, 2017 2:13 pm

SYSTEMS CRASH

Well, another month gone and my recent rut has only deepened. My cuckoo-bananas sister with whom I was sharing an apartment had a total melt-down/break, and I had to file petition for commitment in order to keep her from being picked up by the police on the charge of disorderly conduct. Then she accused me of losing one of her dogs, when in reality what happened was she allowed all three of them to escape during her incident, and luckily some neighbors caught 2 of them. Unfortunately, even though she had to be restrained because she was so wired when they picked her up, they only held her for observation for 1 day and then released her. So, I have pretty much reached the end of my rope on taking any responsibility for unstable relatives, and am choosing to leave her on her own to sink or swim.

I am staying with my BF for a few days until I can further sort and dispose of belongings so I can fit both my worldly goods and my garden tools in my 14 ft camper. Then I shall make another attempt at surviving on site at my garden. I have an internet hotspot and three 265 gallon water tanks now, so it will be very extreme mix of high/low tech. I am going to set my initial miscellaneous flexible expense daily spending goal at $10, so that will make my monthly total spending approximately $400, since my only set expenses will be property taxes, zipcar subscription, po box and phone/internet bill (total less than $100/month.) Of course, I do not regard this as a stable solution since I may be evicted from my own property due to zoning violation, and winter weather will require further expense for either propane or southern migration.

User avatar
Smashter
Posts: 86
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2016 8:05 am
Location: NYC

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by Smashter » Thu May 25, 2017 7:35 am

That sounds rough. I'm sorry. I've been going through some major issues with my mom, who has narcissistic personality disorder. It's never easy dealing with someone when you love them so much but also know you can't help them.

I hope everything works out for you on site at the garden. If your posts have taught me anything it's that you are smart and resilient, so I see you pulling it off!

enigmaT120
Posts: 901
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:14 pm
Location: Falls City, OR

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by enigmaT120 » Thu May 25, 2017 11:16 am

Good luck 7WB5. What is your place zoned if not residential?

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sat Jun 03, 2017 9:53 am

@Smashter@enigmaT120:

Thanks for the good wishes. Luckily, my oddly constructed web or house of cards proved sufficient. I decided that continuing to live with my sister under current circumstances (her choice to drink alcohol on top of mental health issues and pretty heavy intake of medical marijuana and lifelong tendency towards overt performance art not likely to be appreciated by general public) was not in my self-interest, but we are on friendly terms once more. She even bought me 2 cute china plates with pictures of blonde market gardener on them at a garage sale. Now we can just visit with each other like Lucy and Ethel. We were bound to break up household sooner or later anyways, since we are both still too young to not end up living with men again eventually.

An old friend offered me free housing and $15/hr to help him fix up one of his rental properties this summer, and I continue to crash at my BF's place several nights/week, and I am always free to reside in the Princess room of my mother's luxury apartment which is also conveniently located for visiting with my adult children. And, TA DA! ...I am now successfully living in my camper!!

I have a few problems which I may choose to throw some cash at.

1) Cooking- Should I fix propane system or attempt to jump to system that is more closed loop?
2) Water- I have 3- 260 gallon containers, so I am set for the summer, but I need to figure out how to close loop with mini-well and/or rainwater catchment. I have already developed routine for using one gallon of water and a tiny amount of phosphate free soap for dishes, bathing, laundry and diluting urine before dumping in garden. I can shower for free at my BF's or the community center gym/pool, a few times/week, so good enough for now.
3) Heating- Propane, winter migration or other solution?
4) Storage- I moved my large garden equipment, bike and bike trailer to a long solid-plank pallet next to rear fence, chained them to fence posts, and covered with some high quality lawn furniture tarps my BF ground-scored. Not ideal, but good enough for the moment. I am scavenging at thrift stores for more clothing that is super smushable and quick drying. I almost have everything else I own neatly fitted into the space over the top bunk and under the dinette seats in the camper. Just have to dump off a few more boxes of stuff at the Goodwill.
5) Electricity/technology- no problem keeping my batteries charged for the price of a cup of coffee at local cafe for the time being. Will have to significantly expand solar panels to be independent of grid-mooching.

So far this year I have only harvested/foraged a variety of greens, lettuce, herbs, radishes and some strawberries, so nothing resembling kcal/nitrogen cycle loop-closing achieved as of yet.

halfmoon
Posts: 537
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:19 pm

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by halfmoon » Sat Jun 03, 2017 8:56 pm

I was glad to see your update, as I've been fretting in a completely non-stalkerish way. ;) It's hard to step away from a loved one's poor choices and still maintain the relationship. Lucy and Ethel for the win!

Between the free summer housing, BF crashing and Princess room visiting, it seems that you could just practice polyhomery and use your camper as a periodic retreat. Nevertheless, some thoughts on your listed problems:

1. I'm trying to think of alternative cooking schemes and can only come up with solar oven or burying a dutch oven in your compost pile. I've never actually heard of doing the latter, but...

Really, unless you want to cook a lot of stuff or bake things, I would consider just getting a camp stove that takes disposable propane cylinders. You can refill the disposable cylinders if you have the right adapter and a friend with a big tank or some non-compliant filling station. The problem with fixing your camper's system is that you'll have to transport full propane cylinders when you run out (also when you first start). These are not light, and if you're having them filled at a legit place? They have to be periodically re-certified, fitted with overfill protection devices (because we're all apparently stupid enough to leave our full tanks in a hot car for hours) and transported per regulation. Blah, blah.

2. I'm wondering what you mean by mini-well. Is the water table close to the surface where you live? Would it be clean? Discreet? How would you pump and filter it? Rainwater catchment is cool if you have sufficient year-round rainfall, but I'd hesitate to drink it. If it's not potable, you don't really want to run it through your trailer pipes unless you don't plan to periodically (maybe while snowbirding?) hook up to/use potable water.

If you want to shower in your camper, you can bypass the plumbing entirely by using a 5-gallon bucket and a little 12-volt pump. That's actually even optional. I've taken plenty of showers that consisted of standing in a shower stall and slowly pouring warm (heated on a propane or wood stovetop) water over myself with a saucepan dipper. It's even better if you have someone else to do the pouring, but again...optional.

3. Winter? All else being equal (which it never is), migration wins hands down. The propane furnaces in RVs are horrible. They suck propane and feature excessive blowing heat alternating with freezing cold until they cycle back to blowing. Is there any possibility of running a long extension cord to someone's house and hooking up a space heater, or are there no inhabited houses nearby? Also: RVs sweat in cold weather. Pretty darn miserable.

I can see, however, that snowbirding might put a crimp in your relationship. How about moving the trailer to your BF's yard for the winter? You could cook him a great meal several times per week in payment, thereby solving the cooking issue. Web of goals! :D

4. I'm the last person to offer advice on storage. Hoarders-R-Us.

5. Solar can be a great investment, more in terms of independence/satisfaction than actual dollars, but it really depends on how dedicated you are to the trailer long-term. I would also be a little concerned about someone climbing on the roof and re-homing the panels.

Everyone talks here about social capital, which you seem to have in spades. Nothing wrong with utilizing capital.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Jun 04, 2017 2:30 pm

@halfmoon: Thanks for the suggestions. Our great minds are already occupying overlapping Venn diagram space ;) Polyhomery (like it!)shall be my new lifestyle practice.

1) There are large propane canisters available at a store less than a mile from my camper, and hauling one in my bike cart wouldn't be a big deal. My propane wok also uses the large size. My biggest dilemma remains how on the down-low I want to keep things. Otherwise, even a fire-pit would be okay for local code. For better or worse, I am an identified "character" in my community, but most people seem to like me. The owner of the corner ethnic market even gives me a friendly neighbor discount.

2) I could probably hit table with a narrow drill less than 15 ft. deep, but I will probably go with catchment system. Precipitation is moderate and fairly steady throughout the year here. Drinking water won't be a problem because I can easily keep a couple full gallons on hand in my urban setting. I was considering a solar pump, but I think a watering can with a rope-pull would be just as easy. Vanity will compel the occasional use of a serious pressure shower with proper sewage so that I can maintain my sunny yellow hair tone.

3) Yeah, I do not want to haul my archaic camper over anything resembling a hill, so I think my plan for this year will be extended holiday visit to the Princess room followed by Megabus to white beach tent-bike camping in off-season-rate South Carolina. My BF does not currently have a yard because he decided to rent until his ex buys him out of last house. Also, he thinks he is a better cook than me. Anyways, our relationship isn't "serious" enough to keep me from doing anything I want to do this winter.

4) I like to de-clutter periodically, so will actually have some fun with this.

5) I have had pretty good luck with not being vandalized so far, but I don't want to push it. Maybe I will just get some more portable/collapsible units like the 60 watt roll-up one I already own. Maybe I could hook up some battery-charging stationary pedal toys for the street urchins.

halfmoon
Posts: 537
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:19 pm

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by halfmoon » Mon Jun 05, 2017 10:09 am

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Sun Jun 04, 2017 2:30 pm
There are large propane canisters available at a store less than a mile from my camper, and hauling one in my bike cart wouldn't be a big deal.
I was imagining you trying to put a propane cylinder in your front bike basket. How could I have forgotten about the bike cart? It was hilarious when you wrote about the woman at the dollar store looking at your bike and saying, "You must be Canadian."

I also can't believe that I never thought of a watering can for showering. Perfect.

enigmaT120
Posts: 901
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:14 pm
Location: Falls City, OR

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by enigmaT120 » Mon Jun 05, 2017 12:59 pm

My mom lived in an RV for several years but she was at a park and hooked up to electricity. And western Oregon doesn't get as cold as I think the mid-west does.... I would want the propane system working properly anyway. Isn't the cook stove also plumbed with the heat? What's wrong with the propane network?

And I still don't understand where you are living that you're not supposed to live. I doubt it's zoned timberland like my place.

jacob
Site Admin
Posts: 9023
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73
Contact:

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by jacob » Mon Jun 05, 2017 1:19 pm

IIRC, we had an internal 80gal tank but we mostly used external tanks (via a T-extender). We had one external 30gal and one 15gal (15 is the size that BBQ gas grill typically use and which you can exchange in those white cages at HD or WMT). For refilling, note that some gas stations will only refill if you're buying more than 20lbs---I suppose this is to avoid wasting time on those who just want to top off their propane grills.

A 34' on the 15gal tank in California covered with two very heavy popypropylene tarps and the internal temperate set around 60F (anything lower and the condensation would be too high) would burn through the 15 gal in 4-5 days during CA wintertime---meaning 35F outside temperature. Conversely, when only used for cooking, we didn't need to refill for half the year during summer time.

[I recall more than one time when the furnace would run out of gas in the middle of the night... and because these furnaces are primitive the furnace fan would proceed to blow cold outside air in, not realizing that the burner wasn't on. We'd wake up and it's be 42F in the bedroom or somesuch. The smaller your tank, the greater the probability.]

Dunno how insulated your RV is, but if it's standard (like most of them), all that's between you and the elements is a few millimeters of vinyl and maybe 1/4" worth of plywood. The heat goes right out and in MI winter, I'd expect the furnace to run round the clock just to keep the water/sewage pipes from freezing. I do not know for sure though. When we drove through WY in the winter(*), we saw people living in RVs. They all had giant 250gal+ tanks sitting outside. At that size, the gas company (AmeriGas?) will come around and refill them.

(*) Which seems closer to MI temps than MI temps are to CA temps?

One of our neighbors, who lived in a mobile home, never bothered to heat in the winter. They were always sitting inside with the front door open bunched up like a couple of Michelin men. One can get used to that. Keep in mind that there's condensation to deal with because the room is so small. You have the same problem in the winter as with tents. And you don't want that. This is also why our thermostat was set at 60F and not 55F.

tommytebco
Posts: 244
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:48 pm

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by tommytebco » Mon Jun 05, 2017 2:00 pm

enigma,
She lives in Detroit, post riot.
Recall the news reels of post war Europe. That's what some areas of Detroit look like.

The City of Detroit apparently doesn't enforce the old zoning regulations presently, but I suppose they are still on the books. since the old zoning laws are on the books, their resurrection is always a threat.

Edit I forgot she lives in Hamtramck not Detroit. (an encapsulated by Detroit city. When I lived in 'detroit area it was said to be a mainly polish area.)
Last edited by tommytebco on Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 6:59 am

enigmaT120 wrote:And I still don't understand where you are living that you're not supposed to live. I doubt it's zoned timberland like my place.
.

My garden lots are zoned residential, but my camper clearly does not meet code for occupancy as a residence. Due to exemption made for owners of ice cream trucks, it is clearly legal to keep my camper parked on my lot as long as it has valid plate/registration and maintains nominal appearance of portability, such as inflated tires. However, the regulations concerning camping on private land, whether in a camper, tent or tiny house on trailer are more of a gray zone.

I have read the code for the tiny city within a city where my property is located, and can't find reference. Therefore, it should be the case that the county regulations would apply. I have not yet been able to find these, but one nearby county has 2 month limit. Since I own three lots, that would give me 6 months. However, I will likely only be staying there for a few nights in a row at a time maximum, due to intended practice of poly-homely, so...may likely come down to whether or not anybody complains or notices, and then whether or not anybody is able or willing to expend the resources necessary to do anything about enforcement.

User avatar
vexed87
Posts: 1174
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:02 am
Location: Yorkshire, UK

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by vexed87 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 7:39 am

@7wb, have you thought about rocket stoves/earth/tandoor ovens? If you set them up right, smoke is kept to a minimum, which should help you fly under the radar. Rocket stoves can be portable, so ideal if you are asked to move on. Earth ovens should be possible to build using local materials, so inexpensive, if you discount the labour that goes into them, and tandoor ovens, well, I just threw that in as a bonus. I don't know as much about them yet, but had a friend recommend I look into them so thought I would add that too. Pair any of these with a dutch oven and you are good to go.

You might want to construct some sort of overhead shelter so you are not forced indoors to the propane stove in poor weather, these techniques are more efficient than open fire pits too, so reduce the amount of wood fuel you would need to keep on hand to burn. I'd definitely fix the propane stove so you can fall back on it if you are drawing too much attention, the rocket stove would definitely be the better closed loop system in your situation.

I just got a copy of this and can recommend it if you are interested in the clay/earth oven:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Build-Your-Own ... earth+oven

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:12 am

Thanks for all the advice and suggestions, but now moot due to even quicker than expected fail of extreme lifestyle project due to being swept up /shut down by draconian enforcement of noxious weed blight ordinance. Apparently, the ordinance requires that campers be arked on 4 inch concrete slab, but I likely will not be granted permit to pour slab on vacant lot that is not adjacent too residence which I own.

In a previous phase of life, I owned a very old house located in a historic district, so I have some experience with such problems. You can't fight city hall once you have attracted attention and expect net positive result, but sometimes charm can prove helpful. So, I made attempt, but only managed to change my likely identity in the eyes of the bureaucracy from something like kooky-hippie-vagrant to affluent-suburbanite-using-poor-city-as-discount-parking-lot-for-her-toys. (Sigh)

This situation is further complicated by the fact that my sister continued to exhibit her own much more extravagantly antisocial behavior after I moved out and was once again arrested on drunk and disorderly charges. My sister is an INFP, the classic Bohemian, which is the Cusp of the Scientist and the Artist. In the 90s, she was a musician in the west coast punk/black/death metal scene. According to the internet, the cd released by a band for which she did keyboard composition is best ever music to listen to if you are deeply depressed. If you can imagine a very inebriated 50 year old woman performing death metal vocals on front porch, that is what got my sister arrested.

So, a couple days ago, I stopped in to visit my sister with intent of convincing her to seek treatment for depression/paranoia underlying the behavior alcohol allows/causes her otherwise too introverted personality to exhibit. She attempted to make the argument that my desire to communicate which is frustrated by the lack of understanding for the need for resource conservation inherent inherent in the enforcement of zoning/code regulations is no different than her desire to communicate that the world is a terrible place.

I wanted to record personal details in journal, but I might start two new threads on topics along the lines of "What is Minimum Head Tax and/or Price of Liberty?" and Wheaton levels Science and Art: Compare/Contrast", IOW, is thinking dark works of art must be crazy/bad any different than thinking Copernicus crazy/bad or thinking living on less than $7000/year is crazy/bad?

I am currently waging rational battle against my ENTP urge to cash in all of my currently held chips. The man who owns the third lot adjacent to my two told me he was interested in buying mine, so if I threw photo of camper up on Craigslist and raised up the flame under my sell off of rare book inventory still stored in Amazon's warehouses, and made hard call on relationship with BF , I could be down to level of no dependents, no ongoing social contracts, and majority assets liquidated within a month or two. I am telling myself that I have to come up with some notion of better re-investment options before I do this simply for the temporary feeling of freedom it might provide.

User avatar
FBeyer
Posts: 669
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 3:25 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by FBeyer » Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:29 am

Am I reading this right?
The permaculture project is one you've referred to as a life mission several times, if I recall correctly. What was the deadline? 2021?
Are you only interested in the permaculture project IFF you can 'permanently' park the camper on the lot?

And now you're thinking of giving it up?
Clearly I must me misunderstanding something here...

Why would you need to park the camper on a 4" slab of concrete when you don't intend to park the camper there permanently? Because you totally do not intend to park the camper there permanently, you move it about from time to time and you can easily park it in different spots on your lot, right?

It's not fixed in place, it's just a camper resting on your lot and you can, like, tooooootally move it anytime you want to.
Right?

Right!

There is no need for a permanent slab for an impermanent camper, that would just be silly. Everyone in Chicago would need to pour concrete when they bought a camper. And I'm quite certain that's not the case.

jacob
Site Admin
Posts: 9023
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73
Contact:

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by jacob » Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:38 am

@FBeyer - Ha! We actually have an ordinance against "soft ground" parking (generally because of leaks). I think more importantly, it's best not to park over vegetation because the added humidity from the plants rusts the underside of the RV. Slab is best ... bare soil, second best. Grass is bad.

User avatar
jennypenny
Posts: 5245
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:20 pm
Location: Stepford USA

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by jennypenny » Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:47 am

Also a fire hazard.

Some townships will allow gravel instead of concrete, but still not DIY for 7W5.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 09, 2017 9:17 am

@FBeyer: Unfortunately , the code clearly prohibits any parking of camper on street and any parking on lot without slab. I could make Libertarian calculation and just keep paying fines for civil infraction, but there is actually a possibility of inprisonment. I am not currently feeling up to the challenge of becoming the Rosa Parks of tiny mobile house occupation.

However, I did vow to stick with this project for 7 years,, so once I get over my urge to escape, I will likely choose to just take a break/sabbatical, put it on ice (hire street urchin caretaker), and pick up again when perspective has shifted from feeling like fish in small bowl.

I am currently staying with my BF, who has proven himself to be a rather lovable, reliable good-egg to the extent that I am inclined to overlook his tendency towards irascibility and errors in voting. However, I can't quite bring myself to overlook the fact that neither of us is head-over-heels, so I am temporarily moving back to the college town which has been my hub for most of my adult life. My mother and both my kids are living there, and a friend wants me to start ASAP on summer job helping him with old house renovation.

There are two other factors which are causing my interest in urban permaculture project to wane. When I started project, I had some rough idea of bequeathing it to one of my kids, but now that they have grown just a bit older, I can see that they are too involved in their own interests. Also, I am really feeling burned out on teaching the street urchins, in good part due to the fact that I was sick for months this winter and spring with healthy kid viruses. Since the kids I teach are constantly traveling all over the planet, it is like they would have to make a special 2 hour episode of House to track down the cause of my next weeping rash, hacking cough or facial paralysis. Or kind of like being a Peace Corps volunteer who throws in the towel after rounds of malaria and dysentery, compounded in my case by "I am too old for this shit."

User avatar
vexed87
Posts: 1174
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:02 am
Location: Yorkshire, UK

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by vexed87 » Fri Jun 09, 2017 11:01 am

Sheesh, your having a tough time of it. Could it be that you are biting off more than you can chew. Maybe going for full on self-reliance mode, whilst doing battle with family and the system (zoning laws) throws too many obstacles up at once. Urban permaculture is great, so long as you are not losing it all for the sake of violating some dumb restrictive covenants.

Nothing says "don't bother planting a 7 year perennial fruit and vegetable forest" like not knowing if you are going to be able to be around to manage the plot in 2 or 3 months time because the man kicked you out. Your plan requires long term thinking for the pay-off, some stability is needed to get there.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 2651
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 7WB5- Take 3

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 09, 2017 12:10 pm

@jacob and jennypenny:

I agree that slab would be best, but I am not even likely to get that option. It is likely that I will be denied permit to construct anything permanent, such as slab or shed, without primary structure included in plan. Hiring a professional contractor will make no difference.

@vexed87:

Yeah, I have been contemplating the option of transplanting the entire project to more rural, less covenant restricted site, but there are some downsides such as I would definitely have to own a motor vehicle. Once I put the option/expense/resource-suck of motor vehicle back into the system, there are a slew of other options to consider.

I could rent a basement efficiency within walking distance of my garden for $350/month plus gas/electric, which would only be around $100 more than I was paying to share 2 bedroom with my sister. Or I could buy a foreclosure at the tax auction in September. Likely my main problem is that current difficulties are forcing me to give some consideration to what my plans will be after theoretical project completion in fall of 2022.

Paul Wheaton recently wrote something along the lines of if untended plot is like white noise, and mono-crop field is like a dial tone then developed and maintained. Permaculture is like a symphony. I am just frustrated because I am still in early stages clear out the messy closets and construct the rough set mode, and my intention of symphony is being constricted to dial tone due to being mistaken for white noise. However, I do actually have some sympathy for the public officials who are just trying to bring this impoverished mishmash of a community up to something resembling conventional middle class standards.

Post Reply