A lot of people have been curious about what Bongo Mike and I have been up to this past month and a half. While it’s hard to measure all of the little things, we can certainly try to give you a little glimpse into our new little reality over here at Camp Bongopix. So what is a typical day like for Bongo Mike and Andrea (“Scoot”)? Here’s what we’ve been up to.
Firstly, we always start off with breakfast. It’s super important! Our neighbours down the street – Jamie and Elizabeth McRae – make their own maple syrup, and they’ve been generous enough to share some with us, and we’ve been eating it up like crazy.
Breakfast is usually some oats with maple syrup and fruit, and a waffle with fresh peanut butter on the side. And you can’t forget the coffee & OJ! It’s a pretty fantastic way to start the day.
Once we’re energized, it’s off to work we go. I work full time for a wonderful organization called The Friends of Algonquin Park. From Monday to Friday, I charge up my e-bike and make the 20 km trek out to the Algonquin Park Visitor Centre, where I work as a program administrator. This is how I came across the nickname “Scoot” – I’m the only one in about a 200km radius that uses a scooter as a main means of transportation.
Meanwhile, Bongo holds down the fort and does all of the dirty work. Harvesting ash from the firepits for our compost bin, cutting firewood, pruning trees, cleaning and decorating cabins – you name it, he does it.
This week, he has been working on eaves troughs and rainwater barrels for harvesting. Given that we have not installed anything other than software for our entire lives, let’s just say it’s been an interesting learning process. But we managed to get the work done and we are now officially beginning to harvest rainwater for both consumption and utility-based purposes. We’re hoping to get a solar shower on the go soon, and an outdoor rainwater kitchen sink to reduce our reliance – and pressure – on our well.
At night, we do a lot of fun stuff. We live a pretty disconnected lifestyle compared to most. No cable. No satellite. No WiFi. In order to run our business successfully, we rely on our cell phone data, which is sufficient enough to keep us connected with our clients when necessary. But we can’t really afford to casually use the internet that much anymore. So now we hang out, play guitar, play board games and cards, go canoeing, fish off of the dock, have bonfires, and look at maps, or watch old VHS movies.
We left the city pretty abruptly to chase this big dream that we believe in – living sustainably in a small town, with small means and getting creative with our surroundings, and letting people become a part of that while they stay over in our cabins. We are probably crazy. But we are definitely happy.