Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Living Arrangements

The economy is tanking as usual for the past six years. Gas prices are rising like a NASA space shuttle and people are losing job left and right. The economy is so bad here in the States that people are telling young highschool graduates to skip college all together and persue their dreams. Despite our economy receding back to the Great Depression and our declining culture, there should be some hope out there for our future. Each semester I am reminded of my reality and what I'll face after college.

Going "Free-Spirited" - Living in a vehicle is out of the question for most people. It is illegal to sleep in a parked vehicle in most communities and most people consider it as homeless, despite the vehicle being a home. Because we are so tied to consumerism and traditional thinking, we are in this economic situation in the first place. I know that the gas prices are soring and maintainance for a car can be expensive, it is still less expensive than living in a cheap apartment. Living in a vehicle can save thousand of dollars per year if planned correctly.  Another unconventional way of life is pitching a tent somewhere in the desert or wilderness. I cannot say that it's more or less acceptable to do this as a permanent way of living. It's environmentally friendly and for those who live the outdoors, doing this will make anyone feel closer to nature.

Freeganism - This lifestyle is based on our consumerist, postmodern society. Some may criticize this way of living with the belief that without consumerism this way of living would not exist. However, this lifestyle is still goes against mainstream society by placing value on the disposed and exploited.

Comunal Living - Communal living is more people oriented and more involved than living in a car or living in the fringes of consumerist society. anyone who should want to live or start a commune must take precaution against the encroachment of mainsteam society.

I want to try to live in a vehicle until I save enough to live in a small apartment, or at least pay off my student loans. It seems more convenient than starting a commune and if I want to be a part of mainstream society by going to work or school, I can still do those things while living in a van. My mom does not believe in the idea of living in a van or anyother vehicle when I can simply move back home. She does not understand that living alone for so long and then moving back home is a huge adjustment. At least living in a van I have my own space, even it it's on a set of wheels.

To make living in a vehicle comfortable, I do not recommend a small set of wheels such as a car. I recommend something that's at least as big as a minivan. As for a vegan lifestyle, it is going to be difficult to maintain a vegan diet without a stove or a refrigerator. There are many companies that sell packaged vegan meals such as Tasty Bite. They can be found at most major grocery stores. Hygiene is going to be another concern. A gym membership allows access to showers and public beaches have showers and bathrooms, although they are not the cleanest.

I recommend this as something temporary. Living in a vehicle can get old like any other living arrangement.

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