March 8th, 2019
To be plugged in or not to be? –
Real Talk on what being “Off-Grid” means.
by Joanna Hofmann.
Off-grid. Boondocking. What is it and why do we want it?

Well for starters, it sounds pretty badass, and depending on who you ask, you’ll get different definitions of what it means.  

There’s something naturally-magical about camping outside of developed campgrounds without being hooked up to any utilities. Sitting on the deck watching the sun set over a distant winery while sipping a red blend. Being on a ranch while grilling out on the patio watching horses graze on a grassy, fenceless hillside. Not relying on “the grid” and supplying your own power or water, is truly being master of your domain.

Sleeping at a truck stop, in your mom’s backyard, or the driveway of someone you haven’t talked to since college, but has a sweet wife and two perfect kids and they feed you pizza when you drop by (yeah, we have a friend like that. ;-)

These are ALL examples of being off-grid.  

Does it require being a million miles away from civilization? Nope. Does it need to be in the woods or a rustic wilderness setting? Not if you don’t like bugs. If there’s wine being made on the premises does it still count? Yes!! You get double the points!

There are tons of ideas and opinions about what does and doesn’t constitute being off-grid and whether you’re in the cool kids club or not. But it simply does not  matter if you’re making grilled cheese and smores for dinner or breaking into a nicely aged whiskey and grilling up a fresh salmon filet. Or maybe it’s a board of bruschetta with brie and a chilled bottle of chardonnay. Or whiskey and smores. Or just guacamole, no chips.  

So is it better to be more “off-grid” than others? Do you get more bragging rights if you drove 20 miles on a dirt road to get there versus if your unit got hoisted up to the top of a freakin’ mountain and you lived off the solar you produced while gazing at ocean views and sitting butt naked in your jacuzzi? Depends on who you ask.

Our reasons for being off grid are mostly that we want more connection, with nature, each other, and silencing our brains enough to live in the moment.

It also brings us back to our roots. Gets us away from man’s attempt at creating nature. Literally puts us at peace. Because let’s be honest, I wouldn’t want to spend this much money on something if I’m just going to sit like a sausage with a TV blaring in a parking lot next to all the people I’m trying to get some space from and a newly planted shrub that will eventually be a respectable tree in 10-20 years. We are literally paying for the opposite of silence. But sometimes that's the only thing available. No worries, you can still be off-grid if you don't feel like hooking up in the dark when you roll into your site (us all the time).

All I’m saying is, it’s nice to have options.

Plus there’s the whole sustainability thing. Whether it’s solar, wind or wave power generation, we believe the future is electric and that we can have ultimate freedom while properly managing our Earth’s amazing resources.

Being off-grid, to us, means not being tied down. It means the freedom to choose how you live.

It all boils down to a simple definition of whatever you want it to be. In America, at least, we each possess the power to choose the best course for our lives, so choose wisely, because they are all valid. It’s not about what you’re doing or where you are, rather it’s a state of being.

Literally, not being plugged in. Because don't we all want to have just a little more room to roam than our chord's will stretch?

And remember, being able to produce your own energy is pretty cool You don't need to be any more hardcore than that. Go where you want. Do what you want. Be what you want.

Now, excuse me for a minute, I need to show off my cool solar awning on Instagram while doing yoga in an awe inspiring location. (Really, it's a super cool photo.)

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