It is a question that gets ask glibly quite often.
What is it you really desire?
For every person asked there will be a different answer, but for me, I think it boils down to one simple sentence.
I would like to live my life, my own way, without interference from other people.
That doesn’t seem like too much of a request, does it? Yet in this day and age, it has become virtually impossible to do.
You see, I am one of those people is steadily moving away from technology and cities, crowded places in general perhaps.
I want to get off the utility grid. Grow as much food of my own as I can. Find a way of generating income with being tied to a desk, office or factory for 40+ hours per week.
My readers in the USA call that ‘Homesteading’.
Yet for me, it is virtually impossible to achieve here in the UK. I know. I have tried for the last five years.
Britain is a small island in global terms with a population of around 60,000,000 people. (Around 9,500,000 of those are in London.) As a result, we are short on land and due to the market forces equation of supply and demand, the price per acre is horrendous.
That assumes, of course, the right type of parcel of land is up for sale.
I have a simple philosophy when it comes to animals. You treat them as well as you would a member of your family. Animal welfare is important. That is the responsibility as the supposedly most intelligent species on the planet that humans have.
But as soon as you involve animals in your plans, there is a raft of regulations that have to be complied with. I am told there are restrictions requiring chickens to be kept indoors in force at present due to fears of bird flu.
Then there’s all the tagging and record keeping that comes with other animals. It all adds up.
Now I understand there are public safety concerns that need to be addressed, but what if I keep the animals purely for my food supply? Surely that is my risk to take?
I am not afraid of hard work. In fact, I revel in it. Can there be anything better than that sense of achievement you feel as you fall into bed, exhausted at the end of the day?
However, as a single person, I am not sure if I could get a homestead up and running, as well as keeping it running, on my own. Isn’t it at least a two person enterprise?
Finding a way of generating a location independent income has been a challenge.
In these days of austerity, finding any stable income is a challenge for many people. Zero hours contracts are at a record level. Nobody can live a fruitful life working for someone else on those terms.
They are some of the reasons why it has not happened so far. Yet I do remain optimistic that one day I will achieve my desire. It may not be in the UK. It could be in rural Canada or the USA. But time is ticking.
Who would like a Brit to come and work their homestead with them? 🙂
If you don’t ask, you don’t get.