Saturday, March 21, 2009

Off The Grid

I think I have to thank my friend Dan for suggesting the title of this blog. I've been extremely remiss in writing anything on this blog for the past 3 months and in an effort to be inspired, I asked Dan what the topic of my next blog post should be -- he suggested "Off The Grid". According to wikipedia: "The term off the grid or off-grid refers to living in a self-sufficient manner without reliance on one or more public utilities". So much has happened in the past few months that it has been hard for me to capture anything properly in a succinct blog post.

We were informed sometime in January that the owners of our apartment wanted it back and would like us to vacate by March 15th. Despite our polite request to extend this date, we were given no mercy. Instead of trying to find another place to call home, we decided that maybe we should start our off-the-grid living sooner rather than later. It actually didn't require much debate on our part to decide that we would start our Oz van tour about a month after we would have to leave our original apartment. Since our eviction, we've moved into a furnished apartment until April 12th, afterwhich we will officially be off-the-grid (but still online!). My parents visited for 2 weeks in Feb/March which turned out to be loads of fun. It is so fun to be a tourist in the Sydney area. Scott and I took almost 2 weeks off to spend time touring around the area with Mom and Dad Matthews -- pics are here!

Since we were fortunate enough to move a large part of our "stuff" here on a sea-container, we have had so much "stuff" to get rid of! I have always been very proud of our simple-living until I realized that we actually have sooooo much stuff. For the past month we have been trying to sell, sort, and give away almost everything we own. The pictures to the left are from our 24 hours of packing and moving from our former apartmant to our new 1-month apartment (I think we logged at least 5 FULL elevator rides). If feels so good to literally get down to only a few items of clothing and a few pairs of shoes!

So what is the plan? We plan to apply for a 1-year visitor visa that we can tack onto our current work visa. We will take a year to tour this massive country and visit as many things as we can. Our tentative plan is to go around the perimeter of Oz rather than cutting across it in any form. I've found the 2 most common questions are, "Then what?" or, "For how long?". During these odd economic times, I find it hard to convince anyone that living off-the-grid is our plan foreva. Instead of trying to convince or explain why/how we will travel and semi-retire until we're cripple, my typical response to "then what", is "I don't know" (maybe we'll explain it all in a book someday!). I DO know that we will not return to any life that involves a 9-to-5 job. There's too much to do and see in this world for us to spend our days working. I'm not opposed to working and/or making money but at this stage in our life and financial situation, we really don't plan on doing it very much. Both of us feel it is important to take these days of health and energy to do what we love and to raise our spiritual wellbeing.

I soon hope to have more time and energy to write some blog posts about our adventures. Stay tuned.

1 comment:

Danno said...

Not that I read a lot of blogs, but I think I enjoyed that post more then any other I've ever read. I think I liked it so much simply because I know that going "off the grid" represents such a culmination of your goals. You may feel mortal, but you guys are such super-heroes.