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I would like to ask if any one out there has experienced what I will describe.
The “adventure” I am about to embark upon is a journey that is unusual in that typically the pilgrims on this voyage are alcoholics, drug addicts or mentally disturbed.
Some may claim I am mentally disturbed but as practicing painter and photographer, it is a kind and gentle way of being but I feel I am in complete control of my facilities.

In the interest of brevity, I will keep the story to simple facts and save the juicy stuff for a novel. Two years ago, my Long-term partner/girlfriend and I had what most would call the American dream. Each of us earned over six figures, received bonus’s and due to our children in school, we never felt wealthy. Perhaps we were more than comfortable.
We had a great-shared ski house in Whistler, are children were either out of college or soon to enter and doing well. Our jobs required skills and specific knowledge of technical processes. We saved some of our earnings; we had 401K retirement funds, we worked incredibly hard. I like working hard and always have.

Fast forward to unexpected death, a closing of my company, twins starting college and the bottom falling out of the real estate market followed by the stock market. I have experienced a few layoffs in my life. Prior to attending college, I learned a few trades such as Carpentry, painting, and drywall finishing. I do all very well. I assumed I would just get a few painting or carpentry jobs. This time was different. What was different?
The people in my area who usually have the homes requiring upkeep were crushed by the market crash. They were in trouble as serious as what I was wading into. There where shrinking construction opportunities with all my unemployed brethren fighting for scraps of work until the reality of the situation set in.

Ok, I have had a couple short-term consultant positions, since my long-term job evaporated, but the bills keep mounting and downsizing in a dropping market wasn’t working well. I collected unemployment for over a year with all the extensions.
I have borrowed, as much money as I was comfortable doing knowing repayment was questionable. I have explored family, friends done the networking route then government agencies as a last resort. I have hit the wall. No income, late rent, late car payments
Realizing I cannot continue like this and I now reach out to see if others have faced this before.

I am planning on getting my REI dome tent, store my belongings, bring enough supplies to paint, a couple of guitars, and my laptop and a big cooler? I don’t know what is really important. I have a cat who is my friend and partner. I don’t know what I can do with him as I love him.
My inclination is to point towards Jackson WY or Bozeman MT so at least I could ski after what? Instructing? Dishwashing? But OMG, its too cold!

I believe there is a growing group of educated, talented wonderful people who may feel discarded by our society. From watching the numbers of the unemployed grow and knowing that those who have expended benefits would or could be homeless.
This is the adventure I am embarking upon. Urban camping is not attractive. What are the real pioneers doing?
I never thought I would be in a situation like this.
When I was young, I didn’t have the bills and defaults that nag me, nor the family and friends who empathize but are so horrified by my situation (knowing it could be them with one bad stroke of luck) that I make them uncomfortable. I lived dirt poor in America as a young naive hippie renouncing my parents middle class values. I was the equivalent of a homeless person in 1970. I know how the downward spiral proceeds. I understand how appearances are so very very important to instill confidence in others.

I want to get some feed back. I need answers.
Please let me know as some times I wonder if when a normal person hits the skids due to no fault of their own, is that when one starts drinking?
I don’t want to…Are there options?

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I am a libertarian and have been for years.
The state of affairs to say is disturbing is an understatement.
Never have a witnessed and chain of events such as has transpired.
The sadness I feel when I see how fast and effortlessly our value structure in America change .,Look how the media has failed to cover very important issues and fact required to make intelligent choices at the polls, the blatant corruption of Acorn and many Unions in the US.
There are a lot of people who always saw the way the machine works. Because of the absolute enormity and flagrant disregard of citizens, more people are waking up daily.
I for one am prepared to become Minuteman redux
if required to save this joint.
I kind of like it a lot.
I am good with that...
Sorry if I was rude, I have been out of the hiring world for over a year.
That was a good wake up call but understand I am a strong capable man used to operating as society urged me , now its all gone
most days are fine, every now and then you just start to get tired.
One rejection? ha You are talking to someone who has learned to take some serious SH&% in stride.
Forgive me , I was reacting with a pride I am trying to replace with gratitude and humility.
I relish tough love -or tough like... yuk yuk
hope thanks giving was rewaring and peaceful
Jeffrey, hi, I don't have wonderful advice to give you.....I left a job last year that had become a nightmare endurance contest, and took off a month to travel cheap and then went back to my home base in Phoenix where it is very very very hard to find work. Luckily I co-own a house here with a relative, and the mortgage is very cheap, bought the house back in '91 before real estate went insane here, so at least I have a place that's fairly safe to stay. Big plus. I think Kevin was dead on with the advice he gave you - an RV sounds like a really good idea. Last week I was donating plasma on the west side of town - something I thought I would never do - and passed by a street corner where there was a nice looking fifth wheel on sale for $5,600 and I remember thinking that that's going to be the future for a lot of people! Right now I am selling things on ebay and have started a pet sitting service and am getting by with that, is ebay an option for you, and if so, do you have access to some cheap thrift shops with quality merchandise dirt cheap? This can get you some cash in in a hurry, but the kicker is you have to have at least a little cash to get started. Another idea I have for you is to check out the website, about a woman and her husband who relocated over the Mexican border in an area that is still safe - perhaps you could do the same, too, and work on the other side of the border in Calexico? Just an idea.....Very cheap medical and dental and prescriptions can be had on the other side of the border, so that could take care of any health care needs. Plus you could possibly blog/write about your experiences, and maybe pull in some income from that? I myself am taking life one day at a time now and am becomming convinced that the future is not going to look much like the past boom years did, and I think Kevin was once again dead on giving you the advice to be frugal as hell. I would go so far as to say that should be applying to everyone here, as in this economy, right now, you really don't know anymore, you just don't. I was at the Salvation Army just last week looking for things to ebay and the cashier was saying how she hopes and prays every morning that she still has a full day of employment ahead of her.....And this is at the Salvation Army! I would also agree that it is vital to take the best care of yourself you can, and I would go further and say that if the idea does not turn you off, include a spiritual practice into your life, studies show this lowers blood pressure, anxiety, and depression. I wish you the best of luck with getting any job you apply for here, I myself have applied at a lot of the employers here and am hearing nothing back to date. So I know of frustration, as these kinds of jobs used to be very very very easy to get and not all that long ago, either. At any rate, best wishes to you, and keep coming back and posting! Rob Andover, Phoenix, Arizona


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