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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 12-04-07, 07:49 PM   #1
acroy
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What would you Want (Love!!) to Do??

I figured Iíd ask this here, since we have quite a fun little community and the answers are sure to be interesting!

If you did not have to work for money, what would you do??

Work to keep yourself busy?
Donate your time to a worthy cause?
Sit on your rear all day?
Ride all day?
Combination of above?

I ask because soon I could ďretireĒ, with enough investment income to cover basic living expenses, till I die. Itís not a lot, but I will own my own house (no rent), access to cheap health care, no big bills to worry about.

I currently have a hi-paid, hi-stress, management job. It has its rewards, but I sure donít see doing it for another 20+ years to typical retirement age. I know people who have done it, and that ainít me, baby.

However, the job has enabled me to save a very nice little nest egg. With the help, of course, of being car-lite & living frugally!

I am considering shoving the big job in a few years and going to work on a road crew, or heck a NORBA trail crew, or mail delivery on foot, or wrench at a bike shop, orÖ. something. Part time, outside, physical, routine hours sounds good.

Just to keep the mind & hands busy doing something I would like to do, and at which the $$ isnít the big attraction.

But I find I donít know what I would love to do!

Suggestions?

And what would YOU do??
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Old 12-04-07, 07:56 PM   #2
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I love bikes and books and kayaks. With unlimited dough, I'd open a bike/kayak/bookstore/coffeeshop on a lake someplace nice in the woods. Also would have a shooting range out back ... I'm not kidding ... that would do it for me ...
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Old 12-04-07, 08:01 PM   #3
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With unlimited dough, I'd open a bike/kayak/bookstore/coffeeshop on a lake someplace nice in the woods.
yeah i thought similar things but... then you're married to the store, have to manage people and a budget and cash flow & taxes.... turns into what i do now!

edit: it would be cool to live close to said shop, and have a nice quiet house in the woods with the skeet range out back
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Old 12-04-07, 08:16 PM   #4
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I would own and run my own alternative education center. Teach capoeira, yoga, painting, head up community projects. I would be my own hippy-dippy crunchy granola, except for knowing how to fight and skipping Birkenstocks.
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Old 12-04-07, 10:35 PM   #5
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Some things I'd do:

...Hike the Appalachian Trail
...Open a small pub
...Pedicab in a foreign city (Dublin, maybe)
...Write a novel (or two)
...Work at a National Park, living in a tent
...Learn music
...Work in a bookshop or library
...Build a home
...Sail
...Ride a train
...Enter a bachelor contest
...Follow the trail of Lewis and Clark
...Work with kids
...Eat, drink, and be merry
...Make a pilgrimage
...Help someone out
...Have an adventure
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Old 12-04-07, 10:57 PM   #6
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Probably sit on my backside a good bit of the day. Maybe do more hiking if I moved back to CO. maybe some travel.

Right now, there are things I could be doing, I just get too lazy to get out and do them, and that wouldn't be a lot different if I had a whole pile of money.
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Old 12-04-07, 11:46 PM   #7
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I would spend lots of time riding my bike and taking pictures. I would also brew my own beer.

-Nate
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Old 12-05-07, 12:00 AM   #8
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I'd like to teach. And, probably not the most appropriate for "Living Car Free", but ever since I've heard of it, I've wanted to race the Mongol Rally. It runs from Hyde Park in London to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. It'd be a great way to see a lot of the world, and help benefit charities. Entry fees are donated, as are the cars if/when they arrive in Ulaanbaatar.
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Old 12-05-07, 12:18 AM   #9
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I'm already doing what I love. I get to write for a living. That's cool. I'm doing some volunteer work with organizations that interest me. I'm riding lots. I'm pursuing some projects for myself in my spare time. If I were to retire tomorrow, I'd want to do a lot of the same things I'm doing now, although I might reorganize how much time I'll give to each one. I wouldn't want to just sit around all day or lie on the beach all summer. That would be boring.
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Old 12-05-07, 12:58 AM   #10
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I already do what I love im a sucsessfull high paid artist its nothing to be booked for a couple weeks . but I would probably be doing the same but buy/build a building in a good location with a upstairs loft apartment and build the bottom part into a incredible tattoo shop/fine arts studio.

when choosing a career I decided to get into something that I would gladly do for free and work everyday to get better at it than I was the day before.

one thing I would take more time to work on would be a personal studdy of inner peace
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Old 12-05-07, 01:53 AM   #11
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I'd do exactly what I'm doing right now (no, not surfing Bikeforums) plus I'd do a little more travelling.
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Old 12-05-07, 05:55 AM   #12
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I would open a small book store. Be open a few hours per day. That would free up more time for riding and photography. I really like the idea of a loft above the store. You could take some of the higher quality books that you find or take in trade. Move those on Ebay. I found a local book store that pays 10 cents for most books and she is always busy. Or maybe run a book coop. Their is a guy that runs a book shop called the book thing. http://www.bookthing.org/. I currently work at the library. I spend more time keeping the kids under control with their Myspace accounts than helping them find books. Not what I thought I would be doing working at a library.

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Old 12-05-07, 06:40 AM   #13
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I am already doing what I love. I work in a bicycle shop full time, and have a business on the side part time. This enables me to travel for 3 months of the year, which besides cycling is my other passion.
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Old 12-05-07, 07:27 AM   #14
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thanks all, great stuff here. And congratulations to those of you already doing what you love. I'm one of the masses stuck doing somthing tough, that needs doing, for the paycheck.

Looks like it will take some planning to maximize my enjoyment I like "brew my own beer" the best!

I've travelled a lot already and am ready to move outta Texas. It has it's good points but....
So far the places on my short list for relocation are:

Hawaii - Big Island - gorgeous, diverse place, laid-back atmosphere.
Ozarks - fish, hunt, canoe, hike, nice weather, slow pace of life, cool people despite the inbreeding.

International living has never appealed, haven't found anywhere nicer than the above.
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Old 12-05-07, 07:28 AM   #15
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I already do what I love im a sucsessfull high paid artist its nothing to be booked for a couple weeks .
Mind if i ask what kind of art?
Can I guess Tattoo??
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Old 12-05-07, 08:13 AM   #16
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Well first thing I would do is make sure I had the money...so I didn't HAVE to go back to work. I was headed for an early retirement at age 50-52 with my wife. But the 9/11 screwed that up when the airlines tanked. (wife works for them) But we still aren't doing too bad.

As far as the original question:

I would probably find a small town somewhere, open up a small custom shop. Build whatever struck my fancy at the moment; wooden toys, bicycles, tear drop campers, wooden boats or whatever. No amount of money would make me build or make something I didn't want to or for someone I didn't care to deal with. I would also be doing a lot of pro bono repair work for people that couldn't afford it otherwise. Along the lines of Habitat for Humanity or a Bike Kitchen type setup.

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Old 12-05-07, 08:24 AM   #17
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Work to keep yourself busy?

Not for money...but to help people out. When I'm not here on BF, I help people with their questions about genealogy:

http://www.ukgen.com/forums/

which doesn't keep me busy enough,so I also help out at this one:

http://ourmissinglinks.proboards83.com/index.cgi

and that still doesn't keep me busy enough, so I'm working on my personal genealogy forum:

http://mylavertyandray.proboards104.com/index.cgi

Still not enough to keep me out of trouble, so I'm a moderator at this small, but growing and very friendly forum:

http://www.wildlifeuk.net/

and I have a blog that's associated with the Wildlife UK site:

http://wildlifeuk.net/blogs/kingfisher/

Phew!


Donate your time to a worthy cause?

I would love to retire back to my birthplace...and if I do so, I will undoubtedly do some volunteer work for various local wildlife causes. Even if I don't return to England, I will devote some time to volunteer work. It runs in the family--my mother is a volunteer at the Tech Museum in San Jose .

Sit on your rear all day?

Don't think so...

Ride all day?

A much better option than sitting on my rear all day, but I like my other activites.

Combination of above?

Riding, volunteer work, genealogy...how do I get any work done right now?


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Old 12-05-07, 08:32 AM   #18
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I would fall back on nature and live on trails and in a outdoor environment. I would volunteer my time for a good purpose. I would learn the classical guitar. Save has much as I could of Mother Nature. And at the end of a day have a good smoke amongst the landscape .
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Old 12-05-07, 08:36 AM   #19
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I would like to build bike frames and maybe furniture (wood). I've wanted to build frames since I was 14.
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Old 12-05-07, 09:15 AM   #20
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Wow. Who knew I was already doing so many people's dream job?

I work part-time at the public library. It feeds my reading habit, I get to talk with lots of nice people, and it's a government job with union pay scale and benefits. All for only 16 hours in three days a week! A very humane job.

In between I make web sites for not-for-profit agencies and I've recently begun volunteering at one of the local bike missions.

I get to ride a lot. Not only around town, but I enjoyed this past year's two cycling vacations so much that I'm planning one or two cycling trips a month for next season. I got back into photography this year and am showing in an exhibition already.

Meanwhile there are so many interesting books to catch up on. Why am I wasting time here?
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Old 12-05-07, 09:21 AM   #21
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Why am I wasting time here?
Because life is all about 'balance'.



Books...I love books...

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Old 12-05-07, 10:40 AM   #22
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I would move somewhere like Colorado and be a ski instructor in the winter and a river guide or something similar in the summer. Working six or seven half-days per week, or something similar.

I'd need something to make me get out of bed in the morning.
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Old 12-05-07, 10:48 AM   #23
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First you spend a few months de-stressing and getting enough sleep. Then you do some of the things you always wanted, like adventure travel.

After a few years of that, you realize that frantic activity for its own sake doesn't truly satisfy. Besides, it tends to deplete your retirement resources. This is the point when you look at yourself and your living situation and start thinking, this is who I am and this is what I've got, how do I make the most of it?

The settling-in phase is when life can become peaceful and quiet, also very fulfilling in a way that's hard to explain. Deep satisfaction can come from small, everyday, unplanned things. This is when you can really smell the roses.

After reaching the settling-in point, I started seeing car free living as less of a physical/tactical challenge, and more as part of an overall retirement strategy I call Convenience Living. I guess that's for lack of a better term. The concept is that one's life (in retirement) can be arranged for maximum efficiency, sustainability and convenience. And that as a result it's possible to simply eliminate the need for driving and car ownership.
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Old 12-05-07, 11:28 AM   #24
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I don't think there is anything wrong with "sitting on your rear all day" and contemplating reality and truth. I am reading Thomas Merton's "The Asent to Truth" right now. In it, he talks about Pascal's Theory of Distraction.

Pascal says, "Distraction is the only thing that can console us for our miseries and yet it is, itself, the greatest of our miseries."

Merton explains that that is the case because these distractions divert us "from the one thing that can help us to begin our ascent to truth. That one thing is the sense of our own emptiness, our poverty, our limitations, and of the inability of created things to satisfy our profound need for reality and for truth."

Also, "We imprison ourselves in falsity by our love for the feeble, flickering light of illusion and desire. We cannot find true happiness unless we deprive ourselves of the ersatz happiness of empty diversion"

Anyway, I think I'd probably get some acreage somewhere, then build a cabin and sit on my rear for at least part of the day.

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Old 12-05-07, 12:06 PM   #25
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Merton explains that that is the case because these distractions divert us "from the one thing that can help us to begin our ascent to truth. That one thing is the sense of our own emptiness, our poverty, our limitations, and of the inability of created things to satisfy our profound need for reality and for truth."

"We imprison ourselves in falsity by our love for the feeble, flickering light of illusion and desire. We cannot find true happiness unless we deprive ourselves of the ersatz happiness of empty diversion"

For a Catholic boy, Merton sure does sound like a Buddhist. I believe he did hang with some Buddhists like the Dalai Lama.

Anyhow, most people in the world would jump at acroy's offer because they would interpret it as a gift of the physical necessities of life--food, shelter and security. But for us, the gift means unlimited leisure, which might cause an uncomfortable confrontation with ourselves if we don't "keep busy.". So we need either distraction in the form of hobbies, or we need to find meaning and satisfaction by continuing to work.

I guess I'd combine the two. I'd probably work part-time, either paid or volunteer work. I'd also spend a lot more time reading, riding my bike, traveling, camping and just hanging out with friends and family. But I'd also like to spend some time alone, doing nothing, in the hope that I could deal better with the issues that Merton talked about.
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