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Thursday, November 5, 2015

Few Wants and Stealth Camping for the First Time

I've been catching up on some blog reading this morning, and have run across quite a few quotes.  But this one really struck a chord so I'll shamelessly steal it from Mark's September post:
   "Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants."    (Epictetus)

While I agree with this wholeheartedly, I'm having a bad week since my contractor for the bathroom stopped by on Sunday and casually announced that those details I asked for regarding the bill did uncover an inaccurate accounting of the bill...but in his favor, not mine.  That brings the total for labor for our small project up to $7,000.  I told Wayne never again are we undertaking a project using someone he knows without an estimate first.  I'm broke, and it's not feeling too great.  But this too shall pass.

I've felt rich wandering the trails in southern Wisconsin these last few weeks with what I need on my back or in the back of my Vibe when I reach the car. The maples were just as glorious as the oaks last week, but of course this week the trees are mostly bare.

I saved $18 last weekend by trying my hand at some "stealth camping".  I actually parked near a legitimate shelter in Kettle Moraine State Forest, hoping it was unoccupied for the night.  But, as I approached the awesome looking site I spotted a fire so turned around and headed back down the hill for a clearing nearby that I had spotted. It was getting close to dark and I really didn't want to head over to Ottawa Lake and pay to set up in the dark while the dogs at the nearby kennel barked incessantly until midnight.

Far enough away that I doubted my "neighbor" knew I was there yet close enough that another human was within shouting distance if there was trouble, it actually ended up being a good result.  It was a only a five minute walk from my car which was a good thing because that pack ended up being surprisingly heavy with the tent and sleeping bag included.  I didn't bring any food or a stove or anything like that, so can only imagine how much extra weight I could have had.  I settled in my little spot in the woods and read my Kindle until bedtime, only hearing some coyotes in the distance once but no other wildlife at all.

Home Sweet Free Home

I'm going to pack up my Vibe and head south toward Tennessee on Monday night after work unless a change in the forecast occurs.  Overnight temps in the 40's have worked out okay for me here, can't see what it would hurt to experience cozying up in my sleeping bag in the Smokies instead of in Wisconsin.  My wants are few for the next two weeks, just to get to Tennessee without mechanical mishap and to hopefully stay dry and above freezing when I get there.

And to hike with my buddy Sharon a time or two, of course!


  1. I sympathise over getting some you know to do some work. I was ripped of royaly by a so called friend I had known all my life. He went back on his word and I lost out on a lot of money.

  2. I'm jealous of the fabulous fall color you get in your neck of the woods. Great photo of the leaves on the piece of wood! Looks like a studio photo. Hope the days ahead make up for the frustration you've been experiencing.

  3. Yikes on that inaccurate accounting! Well, some lessons are hard ones, aren't they. As you say, never again. But I hope this doesn't spoil your outlook on having lovely new bathrooms. Our needs are met, even if our pockets are empty. Hope it's warm enough in TN for your camping trip. I think you're very brave to camp in a tent alone in the woods. I might be ascairt out there by myself!