Permaculture and Fear of the Unknown - Introducing Tasman

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself Here' started by Tasman, Jan 3, 2012.

  1. Tasman

    Tasman Junior Member

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    I'm comptemplating leaving the corporate world and starting a life of simplicity in a quiet rural setting. The reason I'm thinking of the move is stress and lingering doubts about the value of what I do. On the other hands I worry about taking a one way road to a life of poverty in the mud.

    The smart thing to do would be to transition to such a life. Weekends and evenings spent out of the city learning skills and experiencing life on my rural retreat while continuing my day job. But I'm pretty much past that, one way or another I'll turn my life upside down in the coming months and the kind of life discussed on these forums seems rather attractive at the moment and is surely the frontrunner. I'm 45 and married without kids.

    We figure we can buy a house on a piece of land for 300k in rural Tasmania and have about 20-30k a year to spend on our new life. I wonder is it enough. Will we become bored with the simple life and find ourselves too poor to jet off to Europe for the season? Will making a self sufficient (more likely partly self sufficient) life be a constant grind with even less options for escape than being a corporate drone?

    Is Tasmania the place? I only pick it because I have friends, family etc there. I'd happily consider other locations. How do I pick the right environment? I've never thought much about rainfall or how much land you need to graze a sheep or whether you need a tank or a pond to maintain a fruit and vegetable garden in the long term. Is there a simple bible that contains this kind of knowledge? There seems to be lots of anecdotal info out there (and I'd value more if it if you have some that might pertain to me). I'd love to hear "you need this much money, abc climate is best, you need x hectares, you'll work x hours a day, I did it and I've never looked back, but I do miss my yearly holiday".

    Of course I have a million more questions. But the only ones I really want answered is "does it seem like a realistic idea? and Am I out of my mind?".

    sincerely
    T
     
  2. Grahame

    Grahame Senior Member

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    Ha ha ha, are you trying to make me laugh Tasman!? Jet off to Europe for the season! Ya kill'n me mate!

    20-30k a year!! You're too much! Dude, you could well be out of your mind.

    I say all this in a very loving way, whilst I hold back the tears.

    I recommend you look into doing a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC), it will give you an idea of what permaculture is all about and weather it is something you might be interested in.

    Self-sufficiency is sort of like a holy grail. It is a little delusional and also a bit of a fantasy. In my opinion we should be looking to build sustainable, resilient communities not isolated silo's of hermits. I suspect what you are missing is true community and I suspect you are far more likely to find it out of the big city and in a rural centre of some description. If you have friends and family in Tassie, then I would say that is an excellent place to start looking.

    I can highly recommend the life of ethically induced poverty. It's easier to recognise your inner happiness when there aren't so many outer distractions.

    Jump on board Tasman, I'm really looking forward to enjoying your ride with you.

    "...counterpoint the surrealism of the underlying metaphor, humph death's to good for them."
     
  3. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    I hear you Tasman.... The daily grind of corporate soul destruction can get you down. I second Grahame's 'do a PDC' before you make major changes. The urge to sell up and move somewhere rural is a really common introduction point here. Yes there are those that make a success of it. But I reckon there are many more broken hearted stories out there that you don't get to hear about.

    I'd suggest that you start out by staying put and do what you can where you are. Join a community garden. Reduce your work hours and see how you go living on less. Grow stuff at home. Turn off the air con and the plasma and spend more time talking to your neighbours over the back fence. Once you have proven that you can do it where you are then either the desire to move will have passed, or you'll be better prepared to make the move.

    Welcome to the board. You'll find plenty of like minds here.
     
  4. dannyboy

    dannyboy Junior Member

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    G´day and welcome Tasman,

    First stop I´d recommend is a visit to the local library to get yourself some books on the subject. You can´t go far wrong with Bill Mollisons ´Introduction to Permaculture´ as a starting point. If you wanted to see and participate in´the Good Life´ first hand, perhaps a spot of wwoofing might help. If Permaculture concepts are fairly new to you, a 2 week PDC might cause your head to explode so hunt around for a course that offers good value and a practical hands on approach to back up the theory. And as eco said, get started now! see what you can do where you are right now. Check your area for local permaculture groups and see how you can get involved.
    Good luck,
    Dan
     
  5. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    Happy journeying
     
  6. Terra

    Terra Moderator

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    Hi T
    Great little book called "Choosing Eden " by Adrienne Langman they did exactly what your proposing , they researched it well , done the PDC , educated themselves . If your still looking to jet off then just buy a little set up property that you can test the water if you dont like it sell again . Money spent educating yourself is well spent you have it for life .
     
  7. Tasman

    Tasman Junior Member

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    We got "The Basics of Permaculture Design" by Ross Mars out of the library and are really enjoying it. I've been reading these forums and looking for local community gardens and courses that we can do. I'm really looking forward to reading "Choosing Eden" which hopefully will arrive this week.

    Permaculture is not exactly is not exactly what I thought it was when I wrote the first post. It seems to be a rather larger and more daunting subject. On the other hand I no longer worry about being bored. So long as we can fall in with a likeminded people it should provide for a very satisfying existence.

    This week I'll be thinking about how to transition to such a life. I do like the idea of a small setup as a kind of test.

    Thanks everybody.
    T
     
  8. Hobbo

    Hobbo Junior Member

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    Hi Tasman, we are in Adelaide and have been through the idea of moving to Tassie also, but my sister inlaw made the move before us and had Big Ideas of a new start. She was living in Nowra on the NSW south coast. Tassie has a lot of differences to the mainland. The small population means limited funds for health care, transport and services, also the weather can be a problem either too much or too little rain and limited sunlight. But the Biggest Problem is....if you suddenly decide Tassie is not for you and want to sell up and move back to the mainland your property may take Years to sell due to the lack of buyers so Don't over capitalise or be prepared for a fire sale if you are in a hurry. Better to hear this now then like my sister inlaw.....too late. I would stay on the Mainland.
     
  9. ecodharmamark

    ecodharmamark Junior Member

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    G'day T

    Welcome to the PRI Forum

    Or perhaps a very boring one? Principles 8, 10 and 11 apply very well here.

    Cheerio, Markos.
     
  10. Tasman

    Tasman Junior Member

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    Quick update:

    A year ago I left the corporate world. We got in our car and have been driving up and down the East coast of Australia looking for a place to live. Now we're in Huonville south of Hobart looking for a place and get started. In short, its been a very good change for us. We've already been happier and healthier.

    We've lived on a diet of local food, permaculture and building books/magazine. We read and enjoyed "Choosing Eden"(thanks for the recommendation) and "Buying your Bush Block" at the library (I wish we'd been able to find a copy of the later for purchase). We've done a spot WWOOFing, been a member of a Permaculture group and worked in their market garden. We failed to do a PDC (I know that was dumb).

    I know its obscene to talk of personal finances, but it might be useful to somebody. We failed to live on 30k in the last year. The account will close at 40k. We could have come in on target if we didn't have a pricey/inappropriate car (and repayment) and a well developed love of wine. This was acceptable to us.

    I think I'm going to start a blog about the transition from a suit in Japan to a hippy in Huonville.

    Do you think its appropriate to post a thread on a property and analysis of its suitability for settling and starting our permaculture plans.

    cheers,
    Tasman
     
  11. S.O.P

    S.O.P Moderator

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    It's always appropriate. And Markos will probably chime in from a 'planner' perspective too.
     
  12. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    You might want to take a look at the thread that Markos has started here.
     
  13. ecodharmamark

    ecodharmamark Junior Member

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    ... and in addition, before you buy, you might like to check out some standard advice here.
     
  14. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
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    Hunter Valley New South Wales
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    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
    And really consider doing you PDC before you purchase - we have seen a few students come through here to discover their dream piece of land they bought in the forest edge was less than apropriate for their needs.
     

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