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Happy and Homeless

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catharsolus
(@catharsolus)
New Member

For the folks who inquire as to living in the islands as homeless or poor and are assaulted with insults and warnings to stay away:

I've been living in the islands as a "homeless" man for the last eight years. My sole possession is a 20-foot saltwater kayak filled with camping, fishing and snorkeling equipment. During the day I paddle about the islands visiting my "poor" friends or lay on a beach and read a book. When I'm hungry I dine on fresh fish, lobster, shrimp, etc.

In the evenings I typically paddle out to an outlying reef or small outcrop, pitch my tent and sleep the sleep of the unencumbered.

I neither ask for nor receive any government subsidies or help of any sort. When I need money (rarely) I sell fish to the local restaurants or take tourists out for a ride on my kayak. Other opportunities often present themselves.

Men befriend me and women find me irresistible. 😎

When the weather goes bad I store the kayak in an old abandoned building and ride it out.

"Homeless" is a label invented by people who require chilled drinks, loud noise, air conditioning and protection. By their standards our ancestors were all "homeless."

Welcome to the Virgin Islands!

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Topic starter Posted : October 23, 2008 4:39 pm
islandjoan
(@islandjoan)
Trusted Member

WOW. I dont' know if your posting is for real, but if so...more power to you!!!

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Posted : October 23, 2008 5:12 pm
stiphy
(@stiphy)
Trusted Member

Interesting post...I must ask, how did you get internet access?

As long as somone isn't looking to me with a hand out I don't care where they live. Sounds like you are very happy with the life you have. You realize that you made choices that have led you to live the life that you wanted. In that regard you are as successful as the highest paid CEO in the world. That is truly what freedom is all about in my book. Who am I to judge your choices as long as they don't affect me?

Now if you get on a bus next to me stinking I may scoff, not because of the life you live but because you stink (I'm not saying that you do). That's just disrespectful to others in the exercising of their freedom of others which is different then exercising your freedom to live your life for yourself how you see fit.

I like your last statement and I agree that this is true in a lot of cases. The motives of altruism is often one where the person giving "charity" can feel good about helping someone who is not doing as well as them. The underlying motive though is that if you can help someone then you are "better" than them. This is always the problem I've had with altruism, it demeans those who it presumes to help.

Thanks for the post!

Sean

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Posted : October 23, 2008 5:12 pm
catharsolus
(@catharsolus)
New Member

Sir

In reply to your question of how I gain Internet access: I either go to a cafe or a local library.

I also cannot agree more strongly with your statement regarding personal hygiene. If nothing else, one can bath in the sea and brush one's teeth with a finger and sand. However, I must admit to not being this "independent" of civilization. I pack along toothpaste, soap bars and shampoo.

Thanks for the inquiry.

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Topic starter Posted : October 23, 2008 5:21 pm
Trade
(@Trade)
Expert

Your life is a far cry from the mentally ill who roam the streets with nowhere to go. Or the people with kids living hand to mouth. Sounds like you've made this as a choice & you're happy with it. Others may not.

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Posted : October 23, 2008 5:28 pm
LipstickChick
(@LipstickChick)
Advanced Member

Someday I hope to take a ride with you on your Kayak.

Have a good one

Cheers

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Posted : October 23, 2008 6:21 pm
Bombi
(@Bombi)
Trusted Member

whatever floats your boat. I lived like that in So. Maine for a few summers in my younger days. I cut and sold seaweed for $, lived in a tent with an incredible Ocean view but then life took over. First came love, then came marriage then came the baby carriage.

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Posted : October 23, 2008 7:10 pm
jkleman
(@jkleman)
Advanced Member

I am gonna have to send a big kudos out to you! I can honestly understand the happiness that comes from having nothing. I walked out of a $65k dollar a year job with a house a new car. The basic luxuries that anyone could stand to want.

The day my parents and my family thought I lost my mind was the happiest day of my life. Not that I don't like them I love them. They are part of what makes me happy, and yet cost me nothing. Yet give me their love.

I know live very humble down here in the Virgin Islands hoping each day I make some money for now. I enjoy meeting new people and seeing smiling faces for the most part down here, and I will have to say that I am the happiest I have been in 10 years.

So you don't need some big corporate job, a new house, and a brand new car to be happy. You just need the simple things in your life that make you happy.

So again kudos, and maybe our paths will cross.

CIAO!

Joe

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Posted : October 23, 2008 7:29 pm
catharsolus
(@catharsolus)
New Member

I should like to reply to the gentleman above before I leave for the day....

Yes, I understand your mind set exactly! I was a Cisco Certified Intranet Engineer for many years living on a six figure income in San Diego. I had been reading the stoic philosophies of Socrates, Plato, etc., which in turn led me to the memoirs of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus and eventually philosophical Taoism and the Tao Te Ching. After several years of reading I suppose it simply started to "rub off" on me and I began to be able to discern between necessity and superfluous desire.

And one morning I simply woke with the realization that superfluous desire is the enemy of happiness. I quit my job, sold my house and everything within it, and flew to the west coast of Florida. From there I purchased a saltwater kayak and spent the next four months paddling it 1,700 miles to the Virgin Isles.

And now I will tempt you towards the last stage of your journey......

http://www.deltakayaks.com/html/18.htm

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Topic starter Posted : October 23, 2008 7:52 pm
EngRMP
(@EngRMP)
Advanced Member

Catharsolus,

I love these adventures in life. The closest I came was a summer of hitch hiking from Dallas to 1974 World's Fair in Spokane, up into Canada (briefly) and back to Virginia.

But, I worry about you as you age and you become more and more uncomfortable with inevitable ailments... what access do you have to health care?

And, finally.... if you get the cursed addiction to these forums (and others) you might lose much of your beach, kayaking and fishing time... mark my warning... but, welcome to the forums...

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Posted : October 23, 2008 8:06 pm
stephaniev
(@stephaniev)
Advanced Member

I feel a conection. My heart pounds in ,oh,I don't know,can't put my finger on it,jealousy? I'm lost.

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Posted : October 24, 2008 12:24 am
Ms Information
(@Ms_Information)
Advanced Member

Me thinks Me smells a homeless troll.

"local library'?

Good story though......

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:07 am
marlene
(@marlene)
Advanced Member

Catholosis, what island? Although you sound like you are having a gret life, people here usually don't generalize themselves when they speak of their life. You say the Virgin Islands like it is somewhere else. You don't sound like you have a place on a particular island.

Marlene

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:08 am
East Ender
(@east-ender)
Expert

You dine on fresh shrimp?? Are those mysid shrimp? Be careful, you need some citrus so you don't get scurvy out there...

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:32 am
Juanita
(@Juanita)
Expert

Geez, I'm glad I'm not the only one!!! My husband says I am such a skeptic! EE, my first thought was "shrimp"?

You young people starting out without much money....DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME! It's, at best, an ad for a kayak. At worst, it's a scam!

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Posted : October 24, 2008 2:14 am
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
Trusted Member

Dear RomanticKayakman...
The fact that you can read and write, and have access to books and a computer puts you among the elite minority on this planet.
That you can choose to live life your way, live in relative safety, get enough to eat, and don't have children to support, puts you among the uber-elite. As long as you don't cost me anything (like if you get sick and need to use my hospital), or sire any offspring who you can't take care of, you're all right by me.

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Posted : October 24, 2008 2:17 am
congasan
(@congasan)
Advanced Member

I only wish you could catch and eat fish caught off of the Virgin Islands. The well known ciguatura poisoning from reef fish can kill you. The tourism folks never mention it so as not to scare off visitors. I would love to "live off of the land (or sea)" some day, but unless you really know what you are eating (or selling) it could really sicken you or even kill you. How do you know what is safe? I have an interest in self sufficiency but getting really sick is not practical from a real point of view. Can you tell us what is safe to catch and eat? Perhaps we can meet somewhere to discuss it. I'm on St Thomas. Where are you?
- congasan

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Posted : October 24, 2008 4:44 am
julie
(@julie)
Advanced Member

Neil-
LOL you are too funny! But I completely agree with you!

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Posted : October 24, 2008 4:49 am
Trade
(@Trade)
Expert

Brushing your teeth with sand will make a dentist rich some day. 😀 Gonna have to catch a lot of fish to pay for that.

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Posted : October 24, 2008 10:37 am
jkleman
(@jkleman)
Advanced Member

Well real or not on the other stories..Mine is true. I am making it so far down here..made enough money so far I can pick my car up on Saturday and will have a permanent place to live by next month. So it can be done..just wouldnt recommend it unless you can live on Ramen and canned soup for awhile.

Well have a blessed day

Joseph A Kleman

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Posted : October 24, 2008 12:11 pm
sherri
(@sherri)
Advanced Member

True or not, troll or not, who cares? Read a book when I was about 8 entitled "My Side of the Mountain" and always remembered it.

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:00 pm
GoodToGo
(@GoodToGo)
Trusted Member

I asked a local fisherman at a boat ramp recently how to distinguish the ciguatera infected fish from others and they said it is easy. All they do is look at which fish the flies won't land on when they're cleaning them and discard them! Almost sounds too simple to be true but these gents had a few decades of local experience and were still kicking so who knows...

I only wish you could catch and eat fish caught off of the Virgin Islands. The well known ciguatura poisoning from reef fish can kill you. The tourism folks never mention it so as not to scare off visitors. I would love to "live off of the land (or sea)" some day, but unless you really know what you are eating (or selling) it could really sicken you or even kill you. How do you know what is safe? I have an interest in self sufficiency but getting really sick is not practical from a real point of view. Can you tell us what is safe to catch and eat? Perhaps we can meet somewhere to discuss it. I'm on St Thomas. Where are you?
- congasan

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:12 pm
Afriend
(@afriend)
Trusted Member

I was intregied by this statement made by catharsolus:

"From there I purchased a saltwater kayak and spent the next four months paddling it 1,700 miles to the Virgin Isles".

That's an awful lot of "blue water" paddling and just makes me wonder????????

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:40 pm
islandjoan
(@islandjoan)
Trusted Member

Even if he's a troll, he's generated some interesting, philosophical discussion, so that's cool by me!!

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Posted : October 24, 2008 1:41 pm
promoguy
(@promoguy)
Advanced Member

Well, I guess living solo on a six figure income for a bunch of years and selling a house the last couple of years in San Diego left you with a bit of scratch for those rainy days.

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Posted : October 24, 2008 2:34 pm
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