Extreme Seclusion

Catlady

Senior Member
Location
Southern AZ
Yesterday I watched a documentary on PBS about a former fashion designer, Ingrid Gipson, who left the big city and has been living alone in Arkansas’ rural Ouachita Mountains for 30 years. She's estranged from her two sons and lives entirely off her land, raises her own meat, and has been building her house with rocks and cement. She's also a sculptor and has started selling them recently. She was born in 1940.

I've always thought I'm kind of weird since I love my solitude and although I like humans I want to spend as little time as possible with them. BUT, I live in a city with all its amenities and can call for help if I need it. I would never want to live her lifestyle. Would you?

 

Bonnie

Happy Holidays
Location
Texas Coast
I can't imagine living that lifestyle, and then building a house by myself of rocks.... She must be one unique lady to enjoy that isolation.
Isolation maybe helps with creative thinking.

Off topic .. but it reminds me of the unique group of people living in the mountains of New Mexico in Taos ... although different, the artists that are attracted to the Taos community live there for their inspiration too, and have studios available to visit. ... there are some very historical sites around the area. Beautiful pueblos, Indian tribes and so scenic. It's very rich in history..

Ok.. back to the fashion designer/sculptor on her mountain.
 

SeaBreeze

Endlessly Groovin'
Location
USA
I can appreciate the appeal of living in the mountains or somewhere in the backwoods all alone, although I've done a lot of camping in remote areas, I've always been with my husband and it's never been a long-term situation.

I've watched some shows on TV where women are completely independent and survive by their own means. Even though my husband playfully calls me a mountain girl sometimes, in no way do I have what it takes to live that kind of life by myself. I'd give it a go if I absolutely had to when I was younger, but no way at this age now.
 

Catlady

Senior Member
Location
Southern AZ
Original Poster
Ingrid said in the video that had she known when she was younger the hardships and challenges she would endure, she would not have taken this path. I can understand that, but why would she keep doing it at the ripe old age of 79? My biggest fear would be breaking a leg or hip or something and dying slowly and watching my animals dying slowly. I guess my biggest phobia is a slow and painful death, not death itself.

This kind of reminds me about that old lady living in the mountains of Russia (there's a thread here about her), but that woman lived like that since she was a child and was ill-equipped to live in civilization, Ingrid made the move by choice and when she was already an adult.
 

Aunt Bea

Well-known Member
Location
Near Mount Pilot
I just don't have what it takes to go native.

I prefer the anonymity and convenience of the city.

Years ago there was a hermit named French Louie in the Adirondacks. Louie came down with a bad case of the flu and thought that he was going to die so he decided that he better dig his grave and climb in. He lined his grave with pine boughs, covered the top with some old boards and pinned a note to his shirt asking whoever found him to please fill in the hole. After a week or two, he started to feel better so he climbed out of his grave and continued with his life for many more years.
 

C'est Moi

Dishin' it out.
Location
Houston Y'all
I find that I am definitely more antisocial nowadays; not sure if it's because I'm a geezer or if the world is just that ugly now. I prefer my comfortable home to just about anyplace on earth. Anyway, I'm much too cowardly (and dare I say, lazy) to contemplate living in rustic conditions. Just give me air conditioning and a good book; I'm good to go.
 

Gary O'

Well-known Member
Location
Oregon
Years ago there was a hermit named French Louie in the Adirondacks. Louie came down with a bad case of the flu and thought that he was going to die so he decided that he better dig his grave and climb in. He lined his grave with pine boughs, covered the top with some old boards and pinned a note to his shirt asking whoever found him to please fill in the hole. After a week or two, he started to feel better so he climbed out of his grave and continued with his life for many more years.
That....is....hilarious (sorry, but funny is funny)
 

Gary O'

Well-known Member
Location
Oregon
Yesterday I watched a documentary on PBS about a former fashion designer, Ingrid Gipson, who left the big city and has been living alone in Arkansas’ rural Ouachita Mountains for 30 years
Kinda reminds me of Helen and Scott Nearing
Only, they’re the only ones I know of that actually did it….lived off the land.

Way into their 90s (if I remember correctly)

And they were vegetarians!
(Tough for this carnivore to comprehend)


They inspired my lady and I back in the ‘70s
This was our bible
nearings.jpg

And this one

51ynBRtsc+L__SX384_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

Heh, we’ve sold everything and moved to the woods…. three times since the ‘70s

I salute anyone that does it like the Nearings did
It still blows my mind
 

Catlady

Senior Member
Location
Southern AZ
Original Poster
When watching the video I marveled how strong she was carrying those big rocks to her pickup from the river bed, and in her 70's. I also thought that if her story got made into a movie a good actress to play her would be Judi Dench, Ingrid reminded me a lot of Judi especially her smile and laugh. Ingrid talked a couple of times how lonely she was sometimes for companionship but she knew that it would be almost impossible to find someone to share her unusual lifestyle.
 
Nope, not for me. I'm not fond enough of my own company to want it exclusively.

First thing I'd do would be to start talking to myself. Then I'd start answering myself, closely followed by arguing with myself. Then I'd get in a snit and start giving myself the cold shoulder. After a while, I'd get lonely and make up with myself. Who needs all that?
 

Rosemarie

Member
Location
England
That life would suit me nicely, apart from raising my own meat. I don't eat meat and could never bring myself to kill an animal just so that I could eat it. However, I would surround myself with animals, simply because I enjoy having them around.

I already live quite an isolated life, even though I live in the centre of a busy town. I keep myself detached as much as I can, don't want to get involved with anyone. The internet is ideal for people like me. We can have brief chats with other people without the hassle of actually being with them physically.
 

toffee

Senior Member
Location
uk
Makes me wonder why people need that much solitude ?
it would send me bananas- I like quite but I like to be near a centre or village'
as for building her home with rocks -its a wonder she hasn't falling ill -or just plain lucky I guess 'what if she fell -how does she get help there quickly etc ……….
 

Leann

New Member
While I enjoy living alone, I also love having friends and family (and all of you) to connect with. Besides lacking the desire for voluntary solitary confinement like Ingrid Gipson, I also lack the physical ability, knowledge, tools, and confidence to build a home and keep myself alive like she does.
 


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