My niece recently moved to the Hopi reservation to outfit what they call a G-house which stands in the snow right now with no electric or plumbing. I think she will blogging about that experience soon, and I hope to share that with you, but I discovered some friends of ours were living an alternative lifestyle right under our noses.
Dave and Steph live “out in the county” in a normal two bedroom, one bath place with a nice garden and an aged piece of an orchard, but Dave only works 5 months a year.
Working from home jumped into the mainstream in 2020, but a lot of people have remote jobs so that they can travel and do more of what they enjoy. Often these folks are “digital nomads,” and if the lifestyle interests you you can find lots of websites, like this one, to learn more. Another option is to do work that pays well enough in some months to do what you want the others. Why wait till retirement when you may or may not be able to live those dreams?
Dave is living his dream with Steph. For 5 months he works in Alaska on “the boat” doing seasonal work delivering goods to rural places that desperately need these supplies. It’s not easy work or easy for a couple with Steph at home working for a local nonprofit where she serves some of the neediest children in four counties.
Their sacrifice pays off when Dave is home for 7 months with full-time availability to his family and their chosen lifestyle. Dave is a hunter, and I love to hear about their latest meals from Steph. The Mongolian beef recipe made with venison intrigues me. I would love to try Steph’s curried chicken made with wild turkey or try curried duck. They don’t go to the store for most of their meat; they go to their deep freezer where a bountiful harvest awaits.
This week I saw a report in my local paper from the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources titled “Deer season yields a top-five harvest total.”
Deer hunters not only bring home healthy venison for their families and help keep the deer population in check, but they also contribute heartily to Kentucky’s economy….Each year, deer hunting generates over $550 million in economic impact through retail expenditures, yields over $86 million in tax revenues to sustain public services and supports more than 13,000 jobs in the Commonwealth [i.e. Kentucky] (The Mayfield-Messenger).
That’s one rural state in the middle of the U.S. and only one part of the hunting and fishing that goes on across North America. The numbers knocked my proverbial socks off.
When times seem uncertain and we’ve all experienced supply chains breaking down, I am pleased to know that my family lives in a place where people still have the resources and wherewithal to eck out a living from the land around us. I’m grateful to have friends like Steph and Dave for this and many reasons.
Like the old song says, country folks can survive.