It took three years of wrangling and some fighting with authorities to start our build on the block of land we purchased just outside of Dungog. I didn’t imagine for a minute that it was going to take that long. Our dream is to create an off grid, self-sufficient farm along biodynamic principles and spend the next twenty years developing that idea.
We have 160 acres of beautiful hilly land with amazing views and I’m itching to get started. We put in a new driveway, and the day after that was created, it started raining and pretty much hasn’t stopped since. We needed the rain, to be sure, but we need to build too. The three-year process has tested my patience and now the weather is just teasing me.
We are building a very modest eco sensitive dwelling. Council rules require us to build without the view and dumb, inflexible state planning rules required us to tick so many stupid preparatory boxes it was just crazy. I understand that some of those rules are about to be relaxed, which will help people trying to do this in the future. It killed me to keep shelling out money to experts to write reports that were a complete waste of time and money. Anyhow, that part is history now.
The next few years will be filled with challenges for both Anna and I as we learn to be self-sufficient. I have zero skills with nothing other than a passion to learn and appreciation of the void I am about to try to cross. We will both continue to work part-time which relaxes the financial pressure substantially.
The build completion is probably 8 months away. So lets say its May 2019 that we are aiming at having our first meal and sleepover. In the meantime then I have about 30 weekends in which I can plant things, compost things, mow things, dig things and generally be a nuisance to mother nature.