life with out electricity…or,life around the campfire

Things ain’t been going real well lately cash wise and I’m seating off the days that I can get a money order off to the power company before they disconnect me-worried now they could come today. I can get used to it-lived like a champ through the hurricanes last year..9 days with out power but it was easy for me to do. I’ve done it before. The longest time was over two years from somewhere in 1990 to 1993….not solar no, pure poor.

When we had moved out in these woods back in the 1970’s there literally was nothing period-just you and what you had on for clothes , and that was it. We had bought a pup tent to try to sleep four-two grown ups and two babes…it was not the arrangement and usually I’d sleep against a tree or just sit there smokeing cigerettes to fight off the mosquito’s and waiting for the energy to begin the walk into town.

I had built this rack out of 4×4 posts and attached a 55 gallon drum to it and painted it black-the was any attemts to do something solar. It heated the water from the Florida sun bearing down on it all day and the water usually stayed warm enough to use in the morning…but in winter it became testy-the water would warm but not much. I have no such deal now so water’d be the hassle as always when they come and cut me off…if I don’t beat them by pay day day after tomorrow.

Living around a campfire is fun when everyone wants to go out to the springs and pitch camp and swim…but as a lifestyle of a continual chore to keep twigs handy and some fat lighter and the oak to burn. And when you don’t have water the pitch from the fire soils you quickly and because you only smell the smoke in your nostrels you don’t realize completely how dirty you become from living around the campfire.

My old coffee perculator and the fire itself make it tolerable and gives you the feeling of living a life because it inspires some thought as you daze into its glow and work the flames with small sticks and additional logs. But you sit there in the dark and the orange glow lights up your skin and you see the dirt on your hands and dispair because eventually someone is going to see you and judge you and not even know who you are or why it is you are so filthy and smell. And that shit taste of being dirty goes through the day into the night to another campfire.

I hope they don’t come and unplug me. I confess I have become spoiled by what my electricity does for me. Cooler nights are coming and my only heat through any winter is an electric blanket…its going into the forty’s tonight. I am although able to accept the challenge despite that it was money failure and not weather related-you adapt to being poor but damned if it don’t get harder.

I’m sorry-I cannot say to much more about this because I’m getting too old to do it any more…live another winter in an open house that never could shut out the cold (…and trust this-it gets very cold in Florida during the winter-I am not in Miami) my body is getting too old to try to sleep tied in a knot huddled around two dogs to stay warm but I’ve done it every year since I’ve been here. It helps me respect where I came from and how I got here and why I am here…and hate it too!

One Response to “life with out electricity…or,life around the campfire”

  1. Mike E Says:

    Good luck with it my friend — keep your computer on!

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