Saving, Reinventing & Living In “Orwell”; My 1984 Sahara Travel Trailer
“This is a chronicle about reclaiming things; not just a worn out trailer, but reclaiming my whole self that yearns to live fully and even joyfully in a small home in the central Wisconsin woods during the pandemic. It’s about survival, adaptation, experimentation, challenge, failure, success, humor, beauty, humility and gratitude; and my most unexpected adventure”
-Jenn Todd, author of Orwell Chronicles
I thought that this escape from the city was going to be temporary; maybe three or four weeks while this nasty virus blew through. With my compromised immune system and housemate that worked in the public schools, I was encouraged by my doctor to leave. I was determined to make this work. I had no idea that I was really about to embark on the biggest challenge (and perhaps reward too) of my adult life.
I decided to make this an experiment in living small and humbly and above all, to be grateful for everything beautiful and right going for me. Every day is a gift. It was and is still, all about controlling my own thoughts and emotions and feeding only those that would and will get me through this. I decided also that it could be filled with things I love; the opportunity to learn new skills and failing until I didn’t; the abundance of flora and fauna on my little plot of land; time to write and create. Most importantly, Orwell challenged my personal beliefs about what I was capable of doing and being. In these chronicles of this first year, I found out what kind of stuff I Am made of and what I am not made of yet. I never want to get there. Or at least I am not ready to be done.
I plan to keep things in chronological order here generally, as that is how these Orwell Chronicles came to be and this experiment is still going; I am still here one year later. This year, however, I start it with abundance and more deep seated gratitude for life than I ever knew possible.
In The Beginning
For many years there was occasional use of the trailer and land, but it slowly fell into disrepair and nature was willing to make a bid for Orwell. This is where I began my journey and this is a collection of photos and comments about the challenges I had to confront in Orwell’s reclamation.
Wrapped in Nature
My small property has an incredibly diverse population of flora and fauna. Here is a collection of photos and videos from visitors and co-residents around Orwell. This is the magic and motivation that, in every season, fed my spirit properly.
I was told once that it is human nature to constantly strive for more. I completely agree. Creating a home asks for more and more comforts and conveniences. These are some of the things that I had added for those reasons, and some future plans for things above and beyond basics. Everything begins with desire.