Possum Living: How to Live Well without a Job and With (Almost) No Money Paperback – 1 Feb 2010
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"Dolly Freed is my hero....[If] this smart, engaging, funny, and frank manifesto...doesn't make you want to quit the rat race at least a little bit, then you must be one big, fat rat."
"Compulsively readable...[In]this strange, engaging hymn to the laid-back life now, in 2010, one message comes out loud and clear. As the 18-year-old sage Dolly Freed wrote: 'I refuse to spend the first 60 years of my life worrying about the last 20.'"
--"New York Times Art Beat"
"Dolly is a sharp writer, an autodidact and an 18-year-old of unusual competence and grit...[T]here's nothing precious about "Possum Living" it's genuine in a way few books are, ..."
."..this book will not only make you laugh but might actually inspire you to embrace a simpler life."
"An elegant memoir"
--"Philadelphia City Paper"
Dolly Freed is my hero.[If] this smart, engaging, funny, and frank manifestodoesn t make you want to quit the rat race at least a little bit, then you must be one big, fat rat.
Compulsively readable[In]this strange, engaging hymn to the laid-back life now, in 2010, one message comes out loud and clear. As the 18-year-old sage Dolly Freed wrote: I refuse to spend the first 60 years of my life worrying about the last 20.
--"New York Times Art Beat"
Dolly is a sharp writer, an autodidact and an 18-year-old of unusual competence and grit[T]here s nothing precious about "Possum Living" it's genuine in a way few books are,
this book will not only make you laugh but might actually inspire you to embrace a simpler life.
An elegant memoir
--"Philadelphia City Paper""
About the Author
David Gates went to the Falklands at the age of 20 to become a teacher having had no experience or training in that profession. At that time (1968) not many people, including him, had heard of the islands. He had no idea of what awaited him. He spent three years travelling around that remote, windswept archipelago teaching, as he puts it, any children he could round up, teach them for two weeks and then go off somewhere else leaving enough homework to keep them occupied until his next visit. Most of the time he lived with the families of the children he taught. He travelled by horse, boat, floatplane, landrover and on foot. As a result he gained a unique insight into the place and its people.His previous work as a bank clerk in London's Fleet St., and as a civil servant working at The Ministry of Overseas Development prepared him only insofar as it bored him mindless enough to wish to go anywhere to get out of the rut he was in. Which was why, until he got his travel instructions, he believed he was going to somewhere off the north-west coast of Scotland and hadn't even bothered to look them up on a map.He says that the time he spent in the Falklands were the equivalent of a university education and National Service rolled into one. The experience, whilst testing, has made a lasting impression on him and his story of that time is a very personal and evocative memoir.
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Top Customer Reviews
Not what I expected, this turned out to be a handbook for those wanting to divorce themselves from the normal career path, written by a mere eighteen-year-old Dolly.
Nonetheless, I found myself intrigued by her perceptive analyses and very impressed with her excellent communication skills (and her sharp humour!) and enjoyed it immensely as a thoroughly good read - even though I couldn't agree with all she said.
I'm also glad that I bought the 2009 revised version - Dolly, some thirty years older and my age, has written an inspirational afterword commenting on her previous attitudes, as well as detailing just how far a positive go-getting approach (born out of the five years of possum living) has taken her.
Your possessions don't make you happy but the way you live your life certainly can. There is nothing as satisfying as eating and living frugally and without being a slave to the gadgets and nick knacks you don't really need.
Ending is a little sad.