I did an office job in London for about two decades. Sometimes it was OK, but mostly awful. I wish I'd had the courage and imagination - and knowledge - to leave and do something different. I did train for a qualification in the holistic world but it was hard to make a living out of it (rent, food, travel). Currently unemployed as too ill to work. I hope things are turning out well for the original poster.
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My experience has been most homeswappers want something alot better than they have. I mostly want to move because awful neighbours (think Shameless series). I am finding it very hard to think of the future, try to remain patient, why I think of some kind of plan to move or swap (any plan!).
Also Thistle, you say of your neighbours "I am comfortable and feel secure. Its familiar, my neighbours are familiar with all your difficulties". This is a wonderful thing and consolation (good neighbours), so don't underestimate it.
Interesting thread. I live in a council flat. Had a real problem with one of my neighbours - if community is caring about your neighbours, I'm just unlucky.
However my mother lives in a council flat and has some lovely neighbours, and they do look out for each other.
Personally, I'd like to live somewhere detached, quiet, on my own with some green space around me, I just need privacy and quiet at home to cope with everyday life. Plus "good fences make good neighbours". But its seems unlikely that that freedom and privacy will ever come to pass. I would still want to be part of community in some way though (these days I am part of a Christian community but most of us have our own lives/families/etc)
We're talking a strong, substantial tent here (not yet bought).
Sounds good :).
I have often wondered that, Baguetteman. Answers interesting too, though a bit vague for me. What is different between traveller and itinerant for example.
As I may find myself homeless sometime in the near future, I am thinking, I might end up having to argue, that I have been driven off the land (landlords, agents, council) and have no alternative but to become "a Traveller", which at least personally might be a relief for me.
Ta very much. I like the kettle motto, I'm sure there's a black comedy sketch in there somewhere :).
Thanks, I'm not going to "do" anything. I'm already shattered with the experience I had with the police and letting agents and hospitalisation a few months ago, so yesterday's investigation "interview" put me in a gloomy mood. But really, this is for other people, if they are not already aware, that this can happen without your knowledge.
I have had little contact with police before, not even at my age, so it was all a huge shock. I had a lot of my assumptions challenged about all the organisations and people involved. I just felt very sad about it all. Which feels a bit pathetic, but there you are. Also, just checked with solicitor: it is legal and nearly every cell has a camera. Its meant for "protection" supposedly - but now its gonna be used as part of 'evidence' but as I said none I gave consent to use. Will need to move on and forget about it. But still .... find it v. disturbing ... but knowledge may help others.
P.S. Found this on-line yesterday "the Police : the case against" and thought it made interesting reading.
its legal i think. i mean, officer told me toilet part blacked out. but all very creepy nonetheless. every move i made for 7 hours in police cell filmed without my knowledge. he said cos they had concerns as i was upset/angry (big surprise that!). i shld ask solicitor who represented me i guess but i think it will be confirmed. still reeling from it all again. and think people should be aware this kind of thing. i was perhaps naieve.
I was going to add this to TV licensing thread but thought I would do it separately here.
I made a formal complaint about the Police and had a formal interview today. I had already put my complaint in writing. It was over how they handled an attempt by letting agents to force entry into my home. I was arrested "GBH with intent", spent 8 hours in custody, and then went into heart failure an hour later, and nearly died in hospital. True.
I am a 52 year old woman with health problems.
Anyway, I know the outcome will be a whitewash.
One thing surprised me though. I was put into "videoed" police cell. Basically, I was filmed for 8 hours, without my knowledge. This was revealed to me as it will be part of the "evidence". I pointed out there was a toilet in the cell - surely they couldn't film me. I was told that part was "blacked out".
Just thought people should know about that.
A classic. Made me laugh quite a lot. Carry On TV Licensing.
But darker side, what on earth were the police doing trying to support them obtaining entry. I had similar experience to my cost more recently (not about TV licensing) when letting agents tried to force entry and the police supported them.
Glad for info. too Eightpot, though whats a WOIRA?
Good luck, be tenacious, councils get it wrong. Especially when they don't understand their own laws ... deliberately or accidentally is conjecture of course ...
That is a very bad and naughty list, as I now I have to get hold of a couple of them and I am trying to pare back my book collection!
Please do Raffi, would be very curious to see what kind of van you chose and how you sorted it.
I meant unauthorised day off school! I've had those b*******s on my back and my son was actually ill!
Maybe an odd question but I just wondered about this. I could probably give up every material possession I had but I might struggle with than one - I probably have about 500 and I am ruthless about only keeping the ones I love! I suppose you could keep them somewhere else, but unless you have friends/family with space, it might cost ...
Wow, amazing documentaries, especially the second one, thank you ma bungo for posting them. Its an incredible social history of travellers from the hippies of the 60s and 70s, the change in the 1980s and the rave culture of the 90s. The documentary also explains really well the progression of state powers from miners strike to Criminal Justice Act, which are chilling. Latest developments, remember, people can now be imprisoned now for letting their children have an authorised day off school!
It was also somewhat sad to realise the change in outlook where people wanted community and wanted to co-operate and share - to the current individualistic obsessions with new cars and the latest computer technology etc. I didn't realise how much we had lost.
Interestingly, I was reading about Scottish independence the other day, and one commentator said one of the main reasons the Scots want to leave the UK is because of the way things are, they don't want to be hitched to the tortured and traumatised people of England - they want light, civilisation and social democracy! I understood what he meant.
But also found it inspiring in a way, especially all the leaders and commentators from the New Age movement. I wonder where all these people are now (I know a few of them are on here of course). People at the receiving end of this kind of oppression unfortunately now experience it much more individually. So its a great reminder that we could maybe find a way to do respond politically. One thing that really struck me from the second film is how people are incredibly creative. I wonder what will transpire?
For a full understanding of compassionate anti-natalism i.e. good reasons not to have children, I can recommend "Better to Have Never Been". Its a sobering book on the suffering of sentient beings.
I have a son myself, and I can say it has brought me great joy and love in many ways. But it is often hard, thankless work, involving huge amounts of domestic toil by the way. There is a pain in not having children I agree, as I having children does fulfil many needs for people (for love, for occupation, for joy, for connection). But I believe there is also a pain in having children (when they suffer (as they must inevitably) you suffer and worry with them and for them). Take your choice!
Personally, I think there are many other great choices in life that do not involve having children. Remaining childless in the tradition of some spiritual traditions can be a highest moral calling in my view. And remember, in Buddhism, the best outcome in terms of reincarnation, is not to come back at all!
I read the article. It seems to be explained as "personal choice". But what about the fact that he probably couldn't afford to find anywhere to live, unless he agreed to ridiculous tenancy contracts? Didn't go into that. Probably too political?
I feel the same about shopping centres. But its difficult. I did want some basic good stuff once upon a time. A good sofa. A good bed. A few clothes. Some nice cooking utensils. Some camping stuff. Lots of books! And that's about it.
But it still feels way too much unless you have a nice, big PERMANENT home! I just can't face all the moving around with the shoddy private landlords and their greedy agents.
Has any of it made me happy? No.
I wish I had decided to live in a big caravan many years ago. Despite my ruthless de-cluttering of all this stuff, that I once wanted, but now feels like it weighs me down.
Bubble wrap, in layers with foam on top, very comfy and warm,cheap too. If your rough with it it won't last long but I made one once and it lasted a year before the bubble wrap had to be renewed.
Stick the layers together with bands of parceltape, takes about an hour to make.
Amazing idea! Especially if less than fully permanent/need flexibility :).
good luck lex. Gaia House in Devon often have vacancies for Buddhist-minded residential assistants (so requires some commitment there, but you can check that out for yourself). Have a look at their website. I have done a couple of retreats there, and if I were younger and less disabled/healthier I would consider doing more there. ( Sorry, am rubbish at adding threads but I think you can find on internet easily).
simple, cheap futon and/or mattress topper ? (not sure if you can put mattress topper on futon, but suspect also prolongs its life and makes more comfortable).
Just wondering how those people managed who have no assets? I still think its sorta possible, but maybe less comfortable? Maybe if you are younger and fitter you can do Woofing and other stuff? Did people find others to share this with? It might be hard to do on your own, esp. if female?
Thanks all for your suggestions. Though I get impression Diggers and Dreamers places are more for the fit and able-bodied. I like the cheap campervan idea the most; of course its the most impractical and unrealistic in winter I guess!! Will have to wait and see, how far I have to go, how far they push me ...
But its so good to have a place (UK Hippy) where you can consider alternative ideas and possibilities "outside the machine".
P.s. Any suggestions for best place to go looking for a cheap second-hand van for two?
I also found "the rat race almost painful to be in" and also found "London was killing me". So I left. Late in my life (early 50s) and I wish I'd done something like that earlier, but urban life was all I knew. Life's hardly been a bowl of roses since I left though! I've had to deal with dishonest landlords, police and worse.
Today I accidentally came across a camping show. It was just 30 tents in a field (plus a black cat). They had these blow-up tents, the new fangled-dangled thing. Very easy to put up apparently, especially for someone with health problems like me, but expensive. But I just longed to be there in some way. I asked the man could you live there in Winter, and he said, it would be a bit cold but maybe if you had a proper sleeping bag!!! I remember being on holiday in North Wales in the Summer, with storms and gales. My friend hated it, but it barely bothered me, just a different view from my window.
Anyway, I have a son, and once you have children, especially on your own, it is harder to be "independent" I think. You're in the system more :-/. And perhaps once children have been fully in the system, they don't want to leave their friends, their computers, to live in a field or whatever.
Anyway, I was in Aldi yesterday (like their red wine), but what a depressing experience. Most people don't even look up from their trolleys. They actually do look completely detached from everything around them. Such a deadening feeling to experience I sometimes feel I can't breathe in these places.
Thanks for reply Dot, been there with all that, its all a long story. Advice from National Shelter mostly OK, but local Shelter was awful, virtually on the LL's side.
But if you can manage it, I hope it goes well :-). I've seen a couple of positive threads on here below.
Hmm ... the lack of response/suggestions points to likelihood that semi-nomadic or temporary nomadic idea not very realistic or practical -
oh well - maybe silence helped to clarify that. Sometimes the mind grasps at all kinds of maybe wild ideas when back against the wall; I will have to have a re-think. Ta for now.
I live in Dorset and have an 11 year old boy. Long story, but had a lot of problems with harassing letting agents and then police, ending up with me being hospitalised with heart failure. You couldn't make it up, a true dystopian nightmare (and I already have health problems (disability)). I want to leave this present accommodation and am so sick of landlords constantly threatening eviction for no reason, letting agents and their exhorbitant fees on top of rent, and all the crap that goes with it, I want to find somewhere else to live in area, at least temporarily. And the Council won't help me re. housing issue yada yada, saying I'm "intentionally homeless" - so part of my intention is a protest as well. Because I have a son and health problems, I don't think I can be nomadic long-term, but still ...
Any suggestions? Obviously getting too cold for a tent. Static caravans seem expensive and impossible to get in this area on Housing Benefit; they seem to be more "holiday lets" even in the winter. Any thoughts??? I have worked hard all my life (till my 40s and never even claimed benefits before the last few years) but am now in this position.
Any ideas gratefully received. I know its all a legal minefield. I struggle to think of anything practical or realistic. But creative thinking, you know, you never know ...
That's interesting Nerodog. I have gone for a couple of short nature/beach walks where I live, even on Boxing Day, and people actually look away from you when they pass you by! It can feel very weird and alienating. So I get what you're saying. I even thought of moving to Ireland just so people are less frosty!!
I expect I do have rights, as you say, in the future, but because I'm not sure I want to live here, I'm a bit torn with pursuing that. I get what you say about swaps, but don't know if I can wait that long. There is also very little social housing here anyway, so I think the council may just shunt myself and my son around from one rubbishy private letting to another.
But I really appreciate the comments here. I may have to be brave and move again, undecided.
I'm really glad you found somewhere you like:) .