This add is also in the groups area
I find myself, through a combination of hard work, stubbornness and good fortune, in the position of having carved out a relatively secure niche for myself and those people who are near and dear to me, in that we have food, shelter, clothing, transportation... all the necessities for life, and even a number of what might be considered luxuries. But for all that, I am facing a problem about which I have seen little or no discussion on the newsgroups I frequent, even though I am sure the problem is not unique to me.
Here’s my situation in a nutshell: I’m a white male, 50 years old, currently in good health. I have advanced skills in the areas of blacksmithing, bladesmithing, long range target shooting, reloading, primitive weapons usage, and am fairly well versed in gardening, hunting, foraging, and carpentry... with so many interests that I can’t begin to list them all. I’ve earned a living as a blacksmith / bladesmith since 1969 (with a good enough reputation to have been invited as guest lecturer / demonstrator at several ‘Hammer-Ins’) and currently have a well equipped blacksmith / knifesmith shop, with plans to add a lathe and milling machine to my equipment later this year. As a bladesmith, I achieved my master’s rating in the American Bladesmith Society at their first awards ceremony in the early 80’s. I’ve lectured / demonstrated at Higgins Armory Museum, and organized and demonstrated at the Ashokan seminars for knifemakers / knife collectors. Numerous magazine articles have been written about my work, and I’ll provide a list of them to anyone who is interested in checking my claims. I’ve also managed a bit of writing... a couple of articles for TMEN back around 1976, and have recently had a first novel published.
My ‘family’ currently consists of my business partner / longtime friend (who happens to be female... Harvard grad, class of ‘63, published author, currently employed as an LPN, and working on her second novel... formerly a bookstore owner in Boston, and a long time photojournalist for Harvard Magazine) and my girlfriend (first rate ‘country girl’ and lunch room supervisor for a nearby high school). Neither my business partner, nor I, have any children or close relatives. My girlfriend has two sons, grown and gone, neither of whom has even a passing interest in ‘survivalism’.
I own a solidly built three bedroom home, with two baths, and full basement (I’m in the process of converting the basement into an apartment, working when I can find a spare moment). currently heated with gas (but with a fireplace which can burn either wood or coal), The floor plan of the house is such that up to four additional bedrooms could be added quickly and easily. My shop is located behind the house, and both are set on three acres of land. Everything is paid off and I have exactly ‘zero’ debt. The back boundary line of my patch of dirt is a small creek, perhaps twenty feet wide, that runs year round. The land is currently about one acre lawn / garden, two acres wooded, and is just outside the city limits of a small town (pop. 10,000+) in north central Alabama, in an area that has hot summers, moderate winters, and is lovely in the spring and autumn. Game and fish are plentiful and a winter ‘greens’ garden is easy... turnips, mustard, spinach, onions, etc. Transportation consists of one Toyota 4 wheel drive pickup, an old but reliable Toyota Tercel station wagon, and a Chevy Blazer. There are ‘toys’ aplenty.... a vast library of books on almost every conceivable subject, archery equipment, pool table, half ton of free weights, exercise equipment, Troybilt tiller (although I prefer using a shovel), blah, blah, blah.
Current projects include finishing a second novel (the publishing company wants a ‘series’), planting bamboo groves, fencing the property, getting the garden planned for this year, trying to exercise enough to stay at least ‘semi-fit’ for an old geezer, sharpening my skills with blow-gun and slingshot, setting up the monthly combat pistol drills for the ladies, clearing and grading a place on the property to set my girlfriend’s mobile home, laying in supplies of food and clothing, building a root cellar, getting a start on raising a few rabbits and chickens, and maybe a dairy goat, or two... and... and ... and... and the DAMNED PROBLEM is that there are not enough hours in the day to DO everything that I / we want and need to do.
I need a larger ‘family’... someone to share, not only in the work that needs doing, but in the rewards of having a comfortable and secure home. Since Dave has set up his ‘personals column’, my thought was, where better to start looking for someone with compatible beliefs, skills and ideas than here. So, after talking the matter over with the ‘women-folk’, I decided to post this letter with the intention of perhaps locating some like-minded people out there who might be the missing pieces to our particular puzzle
I’ve been lucky enough to accomplish quite a bit in the way of being prepared for disasters, natural or otherwise... but there is a lot left yet to do. A reality check indicates that I ain’t gettin’ any younger... and neither are either of my lady friends. We think it would be a damned shame to have put the time and energy in building a ‘haven’... however humble... only to find that we have no one to share it with, or pass it on to. Ideally, we are looking for an exchange of letters with a younger couple (with or without children... and the couple needn’t be married in the legal sense, but should certainly be committed to each other in a serious way) who feel they might be able to become an integral part of the homestead, here. Singles (either male or female) should also feel free to respond as long as you aren’t just someone looking for a place to roost for awhile before moving on.
If you respond to this post with the idea of getting to know us, and perhaps at some point becoming part of our ‘clan’, you should be: honest (my bullshit detector is always up and working), intelligent (with a healthy dose of common sense), straightforward, outspoken, able to communicate, opinionated ( I’m bull-headed, but open to well-reasoned argument at all times), hold a belief in a higher power (one of the gals is Jewish, one a Baptist, and I’m a combination Buddhist / Druid / Shinto / Something-or Other), just slightly paranoid (I’m tired of having to be the one who always says ‘what if?’), tenacious, hard working, stout-hearted and loyal. A touch of ‘combativeness’ wouldn’t be frowned on either. It should go without saying that we are not looking for freeloaders, liars, cheats, those who perceive themselves as ‘downtrodden’, bigots, druggies, alcoholics, or members of the lunatic fringe. Skills in food preservation, gardening, herbal medicine, animal husbandry, curing and tanning leather (or any other skills related to ‘making do’ in the event that society should collapse) will be most welcomed, keeping in mind that the most valuable asset you can possess is the ability to think.
Any response is welcome via E-mail, or snail mail if you care to exchange mailing addresses. Tell us as much about yourself (hopes, ambitions, skills, etc.) as you are comfortable relating. I’ll be happy to send further details about me / us / the place here, and you can expect any reasonable question to receive a full and complete answer.
I will also welcome any input... pro or con... from anyone about the feasibility of building a ‘family’ from people other than blood relatives. I know that ‘blood’ is usually considered to be ‘thicker than water’, but it seems to me that common need, coupled with common sense, just might be thicker than either.
Warmest best regards,