The Best Parts of America

by Paxus Calta (reprinted from Your Passport to Complaining, September 7, 2011)

Part of my job is networking.  With some regularity, someone sends me a request like, “I am riding across the US (visiting each state in the lower 48) on a solar powered trike that I have constructed; what are all the cool communities I should stop at?”

Reasonable people would simply flee from such a broad question.  There are too many answers requiring too much explanation and detail.  Of course, I am sharing my reply to show off how unreasonable I am.

Dearest Alexander:

Were I doing what you are doing, the places I would stop include:

Twin Oaks/Acorn/LEF communities in Louisa, Virginia. LEF is a post-fossil fuel start up. (I call these dark green eco-villages.)

Possibility Alliance: NE Missouri community is also a dark green eco-village, with a super radical internal gifting economy and all volunteer labor system.

The NEMO communities (North East Missouri)  Dancing Rabbit, Sandhill Farm, Red Earth Farm are all within a few miles of each other. Three different flavors of very low ecological impact intentional communities.

East Wind in the Ozarks of Missouri. This anarcho-democratic community is income sharing and runs its own businesses. It is a bit like the wild wild west of the Egalitarian secular communities movement-  low work obligation, very high respect for personal freedom, high levels of personal drama.

Emma Goldman Finishing School in Seattle, WA. Urban, activist, income sharing community.

All of these can be contacted through some front door via the internet, except the Possibility Alliance, which is actually, in my opinion, the most important place on this list. They can be reached at 660-332-4094.

There are a couple of other pieces of advice I would give you after a brief scan of your website.  The first is that you should look at, which will likely help with free housing en route. The second is that you should investigate attitudes and approaches to begging.  You will need to finance/support this trip through the people you meet, mostly having them open their places to you.  “I am going to save the world, let me stay on your couch” turns out to be a turn off.  “I have funny stories to tell and will clean your dishes” will likely get you far better results.

Good luck, be brilliant.


The Best Parts of America

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