Category Archives: EHS Stories

EHS Refuge in Australia: People Needed

by Kim Goldberg
September 21, 2014 

Bruce's land in King Valley (Wangaratta, Victoria Australia) where he plans to create an EHS Refuge as soon as people come join him.

Bruce’s land in King Valley (Wangaratta, Victoria Australia) where he plans to create an EHS Refuge as soon as people come join him.

April 28, 2016 Update: This sanctuary is on hold for now. You can contact Bruce directly at admin@radiationrefuge.com or visit his website: http://radiationrefuge.com/ for a worldwide list of EMF-safe accommodations and locations.

September 28, 2014 Update: In the one week since I posted this story, Bruce has been flooded with emails. He is working his way through all  emails, and he is responding to everyone by email or phone. He is also trying to defend his cottage from being bulldozed by the government, as described in the article below. So if you have not received a reply, please be patient. He does plan to reply to everyone. 

ORIGINAL ARTICLE:
September 21, 2014
© Kim Goldberg

Bruce Evans is man on a mission. And he is looking for other people with Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity to join him in creating an EHS refuge in southeast Australia, on land outside of Wangaratta, Victoria in the King Valley. 

The land is available for occupancy right now for anyone who can come with a van, tent or caravan. Those who arrive first may be able to have one of the bedrooms in Bruce’s cottage.

People who want to visit the land for a temporary “holiday” from wireless radiation are welcome. But Bruce is also looking for electrosensitive people who want to stay long-term, build their own cottages on his family’s land, participate in the farm and help create a community safe from electropollution. 

If you are interested in this opportunity, or would like more information, contact Bruce here: radiationrefuge@abuconga.com 

You can read and download Bruce’s full statement here:
Bruce Evans-Australia EHS Refuge

There is an urgency to Bruce’s mission. The land his cottage is on is government land. It has been used by his family for more than 150 years, and it adjoins a vast tract of land that his family owns outright. The government is now threatening to seize the small portion of government land and demolish Bruce’s cottage, despite an existing contract that would (in theory) prevent such action. The showdown with the government could happen next month, in early October 2014. 

Bruce Evans, a 49-year-old web designer with EHS, wants people to come join him on his rural farm in southeast Australia to create an EHS Refuge.

Bruce Evans, a 49-year-old web designer with EHS, wants people to come join him on his rural farm in southeast Australia to create an EHS Refuge.

“I want to bring lots of people with the same condition as me to this property and declare it a sanctuary for EHS sufferers,” says Bruce. “I want this area declared as a sanctuary where the telcos cannot infringe, where we can be left alone and not be irradiated.” 

The nearest town is 30 kilometres away, and according to Bruce the radiation is minimal at one end of the town. “You can sit in the street and have a coffee, no problem,” says Bruce. “There is also an abundance of wineries and cheese factories with free tasting on the other side of the mountain. There are very picturesque valleys and farms everywhere here.”

Bruce is 49 years old and works as a web designer. It is a profession he has been able to relocate to his rural cottage in King Valley, since the work is largely done online. He says other electrosensitive people with similar web-based businesses could do likewise on this property. 

Life in city “unbearable”

“I have severe EHS and cannot live in the city, as it is unbearable,” he says. “I am a prisoner in my own home there and cannot go outside for longer than half an hour. And even then, I have to run like a rat in a maze to avoid the phone tower locations. I was lucky that my father had this cottage in the hills that has no, or extremely limited, phone coverage. I can live here without any problems from phone towers.” 

A heard of goats from the goat farm across the road is fond of grazing in Bruce's yard.

A herd of goats from the goat farm across the road is fond of grazing in Bruce’s yard.

Bruce says he would be devastated if the government bulldozes the cottage that has become his own safe haven, and one that could shelter a few other EHS people as well. However, it won’t be the end of his sanctuary plans, since his family owns a much larger block of land two kilometres away. 

“We have vast tracts of land that are completely owned by us and cannot be taken away,” says Bruce “It is a beautiful countryside with plenty of trees and much scope for secluded living. My father is willing to let people come here and build their own cottages, grow their own food and put in a little bit of farm work to earn their keep. There is some work in the surrounding districts with various farms and vineyards. There may be some work for people who have website or IT experience,” he adds. 

In addition to the family farm on the property, Bruce is interested in developing communal facilities for the EHS refuge such as a communal kitchen, internet hub and gym suitable for yoga, martial arts and more. People with internet-based businesses could run their business from the property. Healing businesses such as meditation, yoga or massage would also be quite feasible and welcome. 

“We need people here now, today, this week,” says Bruce. “Even if you can only come for a couple of days or a week to have a look around. This is very beautiful country, and I aim to keep it radiation free.”

King Valley is located midway between Moyhu and Whitfield. See map below, or download map here: Map of Wangaratta Area.

See the land on Google Maps here.

Wangaratta Map

Steve Weller: Dispelling Misconceptions about EHS

By Kim Goldberg

May 13, 2014

Steve Weller, Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia, and author of the report: “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Steve Weller, Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia, and author of the report: “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Australian Steve Weller was 32 years old when he first determined in 2001 that he was sensitive to wireless radiation. He had used computers his entire adult life. He also worked in the IT (Information Technology) industry, and describes himself as an early adopter of technology.

“I was looking forward to the freedom [wireless technology] would afford me,” Steve recalls. “No more wires cluttering the desk, free to do my work on my laptop at the kitchen table while I had breakfast.”

Being technically savvy, Steve decided to buy the most powerful Wi-Fi router that was available at the time. His subsequent discovery that he was being sickened by the hardware of his life and work was not easy news to absorb. But he could not ignore the alarming effects this technology was having on his body.

“On first using my wireless router, I began to feel pressure in my head, pressure in my chest, and tingling sensations in my hands and face within a few minutes of use,” Steve says. “I also noted (and so did my wife) that my temperament changed from my normally relaxed manner to being more agitated and short tempered when using my Wi-Fi enabled router.”

With more prolonged use, Steve’s symptoms expanded to include a burning sensation in his intestines, chest pressure, irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) followed by thumping heartbeats “like my heart was trying to jump out of my chest,” Steve recalls.

“I soon realised that a consistent pattern was developing when using my wireless router… It was at this point that I made a conscious decision to not use a wireless network to connect to the internet,” he says.

Today, 13 years later, Steve still uses computers, he still works in IT, and he is still electrosensitive. But he has, through much research and reading (and relocation), learned how to reduce his exposure and thereby keep the worst of his symptoms at bay—at least until wireless smart meters were introduced to his neighbourhood in 2011.

Although Steve managed to keep a smart meter off his own home in Melbourne, he was severely affected by his neighbours’ two smart meters that were installed three meters away from his bedroom.

“I found I was waking at specific times every night,” Steve recounts. “It felt like someone had taken a long, sharp needle and quickly pushed it into my head.” Steve found he could no longer use the front areas of his house that received the biggest dose from his neighbours’ smart meters. He has recently moved from Melbourne to Queensland, a city that has not been fitted up with smart meters.

Since moving from Melbourne to Queensland, where there are no wireless smart meters yet,  Steve Weller now has a safe haven in his backyard... for the time being.

Since moving from Melbourne to Queensland, where there are no wireless smart meters yet, Steve Weller now has a safe haven in his backyard… for the time being.

Steve, who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Microbiology from Monash University in Australia, is now the Vice President of Stop Smart Meters Australia.

And in an effort to educate politicians, scientists, and the general public on the under-recognized health crisis of electrosensitivity, Steve has documented his own case, along with much scientific research, in an 18-page brief titled “Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS): A Personal Case Study”.

Read and download Steve Weller’s complete case study here: Steve Weller Case Study. 

What needs to happen next…

From the final pages of Steve Weller’s well-researched and thoroughly annotated brief on EHS:

“First and foremost, governments need to recognise that EHS is real and can be a serious health impairment, like Sweden does. Furthermore, medical professionals need to be educated on what EHS is, how to diagnose it and how to treat it. Education programs need to be established at Universities that cover this topic. The public also needs to be educated and informed of the risks of using wireless devices clearly and without prejudice or unwanted influence from those who market these devices. The media often portrays those who are suffering in a poor light, leading to hurtful comments and ridicule from uninformed members of the public. This needs to change. Scientists often weigh in on the argument, suggesting that EHS is a psychosomatic illness based on what I believe to be faulty scientific studies that use only the provocation test as the basis for their claims. Further research maybe required, but those who are suffering should not be held hostage by wrangling scientists and politicians as they argue the validity of EHS and testing techniques. The symptomology and causative factors of EHS are known and have been known for years.”

September 21, 2014 Update: Steve is now exploring the possibility of creating a safe haven somewhere in Australia for people with EHS. He has written a summary outlining some of the many logistical considerations for bringing a community of electrosensitive people together for this purpose. It is a document that may be useful to other people elsewhere who are trying to establish EHS refuges. 

Read and download Steve’s Safe Haven Brief here: Safe Haven Brief by Steve Weller.

 

George Parker: Military Exposure to Wireless Radiation

By Kim Goldberg

March 26, 2014 

George Parker was healthy and physically fit when he arrived for his 12-month tour of duty in South Vietnam in 1968-1969, where he was a Troop Sergeant of a Signals Communications troop in the Australian Army.

George Parker was healthy and physically fit when he arrived for his 12-month tour of duty in South Vietnam in 1968-1969, where he was a Troop Sergeant of a Signals Communications troop in the Australian Army.

George Parker served in the Australian Army for 21 years, from 1959-1980, working in worldwide communications within the Corps of Signals. But it was his one-year tour of duty in South Vietnam 45 years ago that changed his life forever. During that tour, George received much greater and more constant exposure to radio frequency microwaves from the various radio transmitters and receivers he was living and working with.

As a result of his Army exposure, George developed significant and lifelong electrosensitivity. But until the year 2000, he had no name for his disabling condition, and no insight into the cause of his torment. He just termed it his “silent illness”.

George outside of his quarters, South Vietnam, 1969

George outside of his quarters, South Vietnam, 1969

“I arrived in South Vietnam in December 1968,” George tells me. “After a month or so, I began to feel ill, strange and suffering from nausea. There was a 1,000-watt transmitting antenna that was radiating continuously over our base camp, for rear communications back to Australia. When not on operations, we were camped at our base camp. It was possible to boil water in front of the bed-frame antenna system. I lived and worked in close proximity to all of this equipment, and slept 100 meters away. That was just part and parcel of the life of a communicator,” George explains.

As his tour in Vietnam progressed, George’s symptoms worsened. “I was weak and tired, I was fatiguing easily and experiencing, vomiting, diarrhea, headaches, joint pain, confusion, anxiety, and even bouts of crying,” he recounts in his diaries, which he generously gave me access to for writing up his story.

George, who had been a very physically fit soldier prior to his Vietnam tour, returned home to Australia in December of 1969 where his symptoms expanded further.

The George Parker who returned home to Australia after a year's exposure to RF radiation was tormented by his "silent illness" of electrosensitivity

The George Parker who returned home to Australia after a year’s exposure to RF radiation was haunted and tormented by his “silent illness” of electrosensitivity

“I suffered continually with chronic flu-like illness, aching glands, aches and pains in all joints and muscles, cold sweats, always feeling sluggish and extremely sleepy, and I had difficulty with memory and concentration,” George recalls. “The symptoms waxed and waned, interfering with my family, Army, and sporting life,” he adds.

George had adopted a rigorous fitness program and became actively involved in marathon kayak racing—all as part of his bid to conquer his mysterious affliction. But his recovery time after each grueling kayak race grew longer and longer until he finally had to give up the sport he loved in 1983.

Despite numerous visits to doctors over the ensuing years, none of them could accurately diagnose George’s malady. Instead, doctors scratched their heads, gave George a pat on the back, and sent him out the door with antibiotics, anti-depressants, and a variety of other pills.

“My Army mates nicknamed me Pills Parker,” George remembers.

George had long suspected that his time in South Vietnam was at the root of his ongoing health problems, which all seemed to start there.

“I began to believe that my respiratory disorder was due to inhaling Agent Orange, insecticides, other chemicals, gas, and dust [while in Vietnam],” he says. And indeed such toxins may have played a part in George’s baffling health problems.

“I felt as though I had ants crawling all over me”

So potent was the RF radiation near the bed-frame antenna system of the TRC-24 that it was possible to boil water in front of it. Shown here, the antenna is mounted on a mast beside the shelter while on operations north of Saigon, 1969.

So potent was the RF radiation near the bed-frame antenna system of the TRC-24 that it was possible to boil water in front of it. Shown here, the antenna is mounted on a mast beside the shelter while on operations north of Saigon (Long Binh Ops) 1969.

“By 1984, I was beginning to experience persistent lack of concentration, memory lapses, dizziness to the point of nearly fainting, severe headaches, migraines, numbness and tingling all over my arms, legs, and scalp. At times I felt as though I had ants crawling all over me,” George recalls. He became chronically drowsy. But when he fell asleep, he had “terrible strange dreams.”

It would take another 16 years before George would gain some real insight into the primary cause of his problems.

In 1997, George and his wife moved to Tasmania, an island state located 150 miles south of the Australian continent. Tasmania is famed for its large and comparatively unspoiled natural environment. The couple lived in a part of Tasmania with no mobile phone coverage, and the nearest power transmission lines were miles away.

“After a month in Tasmania, for no apparent reason, my health began to improve,” George recalls. “Eventually most of my symptoms disappeared, and I was experiencing good health for the first time since 1969.”

In 2000, George and his wife returned to the Australian mainland, and all of George’s symptoms quickly returned. The full picture finally emerged for George after he and his wife embarked on a caravan lifestyle, touring around Australia. When his wife activated her mobile phone, George felt burning and tingling in his limbs. Each time they would leave the road and enter a caravan park where he was exposed to much higher densities of microwave radiation from other caravans with mobile phones, as well as the low frequency electromagnetic radiation from the site’s power system, George’s symptoms would worsen.

“I began to realize that I was suffering from electrosensitivity,” George says. “Within twelve months, all my symptoms had returned with a vengeance.”  

The E513 was a 1,000-watt high-frequency transmitter, and was one of the components irradiating Geroge for 12 months in South Vietnam.

The E513 was a 1,000-watt high-frequency transmitter, and was one of the components irradiating George for his 12-month tour in South Vietnam in the 1960s.

Then in 2004, George came across some articles on microwave illness. “These articles confirmed that what I suffered in Vietnam was due to the high microwave radiation of the wireless equipment I worked with and maintained,” George tells me. “My symptoms, which began in South Vietnam, were the same symptoms of microwave and radio sickness, and they were further aggravated by my continuation of Army service in high power and microwave radiation areas at military establishments [after Vietnam].”

In fact, it was back in the 1950s that Russian researchers identified what they termed “microwave sickness” in soldiers and workers who received daily occupational exposure to radio frequency (RF) and microwave equipment. Clinics were established in Moscow, Leningrad and other cities in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe to treat thousands of people afflicted with the same condition George was suffering from, due to his own military exposure to this radiation.

The AN-GRC 106 was a 200-watt high frequency receiver/transmitter used by George and his troop for for back-up communications

The AN-GRC 106 was a 200-watt high frequency receiver/transmitter used by George and his troop for  back-up communications.

In 1971, the US Naval Medical Research Institute compiled a 116-page report consisting of a comprehensive bibliography of all known “Reported Biological Phenomena and Clinical Manifestations Attributed to Microwave and Radio-Frequency Radiation.” That report, now declassified, contains a staggering amount data that is decades old. The list of known and suspected health maladies arising from exposure to this type of communications and radar-related radiation is pages long and spans everything from myocardial necrosis, convulsions, and liver enlargement, to blood and bone changes, scalp sensations, and irritability. This Navy report leaves no doubt whatsoever on the questions of: “What did the US military (and government) know, and when did they know it?” They knew it all in 1971 at the latest. And possibly much sooner, if they had access to the Russian research back in the 1950s.

After George was discharged from the Australian Army in 1980, he and his wife moved into populated suburban areas where high power transmission lines were never more than 50-100 meters from their home.

“This was another reason why my symptoms worsened,” George says. “Once I moved away from that environment [to Tasmania] from 1997-2000, my health improved.”

Now active in online support groups

George Parkerr today, at age 76.

George Parker today, at age 76.

Today at age 76, George is focusing on living the best life he can within the constraints of his retirement village in Gold Coast, Queensland, where neighbors populate their homes with the typical assortment of wireless devices.

He has become an active participant and contributor on several electrosensitivity support groups on Facebook. His decades of surviving with EHS (Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity)—and even keeping a sense of humor about it—have made him a bit of a legend in these online support groups.

“Wireless technology is no different than asbestos and passive cigarette smoking, which have finally been banned in most countries, but only after decades of fighting for our rights,” George reminds his fellow sufferers in a posting.

Elsewhere in cyberspace, he tells an electrosensitive woman who is having a difficult day: “I have always believed that the reason some suffer EHS so extremely and so much worse than other people is because they have a sensitive spirit.”

© Kim Goldberg 2014. All rights reserved.

(George Parker’s story will be included in Kim Goldberg’s forthcoming book REFUGIUM: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague. Read more people’s stories here.)

Gary Duncan: Healed by the Land

by Kim Goldberg

February 7, 2014

Gary Duncan was a touring singer/songwriter as well as a successful builder and architectural designer until environmental illness (electrosensitivity and multiple chemical sensitivity) rendered him unable to work or perform.

Gary Duncan was a touring singer/songwriter as well as a successful builder and architectural designer until environmental illness (electrosensitivity and multiple chemical sensitivity) rendered him unable to work or perform.

Twenty years ago, Colorado native Gary Duncan was at the peak of his career as a professional builder, cabinet-maker, and architectural designer. But the same career that had rewarded him so well was about to take it all away. Gary plunged into a mysterious state of complete medical disability, which he was unable to explain despite seeing five doctors and having a $10,000 battery of tests performed. 

It ultimately took an acupuncturist to correctly diagnose Gary’s Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, triggered by years of exposure to formaldehyde in construction materials. 

Gary embarked on a series of lifestyle changes to rid his home and body of chemical toxins. An organic diet, elimination of pesticides, and a thorough housecleaning were all part of his health recovery. 

He responded quickly to the new protocol. But many of his worst symptoms remained, including headaches, tinnitus, and pain. Gary was determined to restore his health to one hundred percent. And that’s when he discovered the other piece of the puzzle contributing to his poisoning. 

Around this time, Gary met and befriended a man named Roland at a drumming circle. Roland was a building biologist and an electromagnetic field technician from Germany. When Roland visited Gary’s tiny trailer and brought his measuring instruments, the two men discovered that Gary had been living and sleeping in an alarmingly high electrical field—one that was many times higher than even the “extreme concern” level of fifty volts per meter, as set forth in building biology guidelines. 

“That’s when the battle began,” Gary explains. “As the unneeded appliances left my life, the remaining ones got shielded. I learned to avoid fluorescent lights, I dumped the CFLs [compact fluorescent lights], and things got dramatically better.” 

But the real turning point for Gary came later that winter in 2004. 

Gary spends his winters living in his 86-square-foot ”Micro Habitat"—a converted 1972 Nomad trailer. In this photo, he is parked 60 miles from town on the Colorado River in January. Outside, the temperature is 15 degrees below freezing. But inside, Gary is  warmed by the winter sun through a large window - cozy enough to play banjo in the nude, he says.

Gary spends his winters living in his 86-square-foot ”Micro Habitat”—a converted 1972 Nomad trailer. In this photo, he is parked 60 miles from town on the Colorado River in January. Outside, the temperature is 15 degrees below freezing. But inside, Gary is warmed by the winter sun through a large window – cozy enough to play banjo in the nude, he says.

“A very violent and shattering episode with a berserk, alcoholic landlord ended with me pulling my little travel trailer out of town in the middle of winter to a secluded canyon,” Gary recalls. “On the third morning, as I sat there with my cup of coffee, I had the distinct sensation that something was missing. What was gone was the pain, sinusitis, ringing in the ears, nightmares, despair, and fatigue that had destroyed my life for a decade without reprieve. I had slept like a baby both nights. I was fine.” 

In fact, Gary’s unplanned exit from civilization ten years ago confirms what is now known about both Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity. Namely, they are both “functional impairments” (to use the Swedish designation), not innate personal disabilities. 

“There is nothing wrong with the patient,” explains Gary. “What’s wrong is the deteriorated environment. Remove me from the mess, and I’m just fine. At 66, I have more energy than when I was 30,” he adds. “And I will remain that way as long as I am away from modern culture.” 

To ensure that he and others like him have safe places to live, work, and rebuild their health, Gary founded the Smart Shelter Network in 1996, and later the Land Steward Program. 

Ruth Davis, shown here with Gary, is another electrosenstive who has been healed by the land and is part of the Land Steward Program. This Toyota Chinook is her home on wheels. Read Ruth's story here: http://www.onaravenswing.com

Ruth Davis, shown here with Gary, is another electrosenstive who has been healed by the land and is now part of the Land Steward Program. This modified Toyota Chinook RV is her home on wheels. Visit Ruth’s website for details on her story: http://www.onaravenswing.com

Gary’s volunteer land stewards—people who have all been poisoned in some way by modern society—collectively manage and protect (with no cost to landowners or government) a huge swath of wild land in the Tabeguache Corridor. The corridor is a triangle of 10,000 square miles of land bounded by Telluride and Aspen, Colorado, and by Moab, Utah. The area encompasses the 800-year-old lands of the nomadic Tabeguache Ute Indians. 

In exchange, Gary and his land stewards are able to rebuild their own health and live in safety, far from the toxin of electro-pollution. 

“If the land can heal those with environmental illness, then those with E.I. should also heal the land.”

Gary’s land stewards remove invasive weeds with the use of hand-tools that Gary has created for the task. And they monitor and restore the land in other ways as well. 

“The wild lands are in deplorable shape from cattle overgrazing, motorized vehicle recreation, camper trash, weeds, and drug labs,” Gary explains. “I decided that if the land can heal those with environmental illness, then those with EI should also heal the land.” 

Tabeguache Area (Source: US Forest Service)

Tabeguache Area (Source: US Forest Service)

Gary is also deeply concerned about the thirty percent die-off of Colorado forests due to cell phone radiation and power-line EMF—a pattern he says is replicated in Holland, South Africa, and elsewhere around the world. 

“The killer,” says Gary, “is our myopic, self-centered obsession with instant communication. This is the disease of the wireless age.” 

Gary likens our cultural love affair with wireless technologies to alcoholism, drug dependency, or any other form of addiction. 

“Tell a cell phone user they are addicted, that it’s bad for their health, that there are 9,000 professional medical studies that prove it, and not to bring their phones into your presence, or grab the bottle of wine in a paper sack out of the grips of a wino in the park—the results are identical,” Gary remarks. “Anger, denial, venom, refusal, resistance to fact—all at the same time the patient continues to plummet.” 

Gary knows the terrain of addiction all too well. He is a recovering alcoholic, who has been clean and sober for 26 years. 

Juniper Tree at Black Canyon at Gunnison National Monument, Colorado (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Juniper Tree at Black Canyon at Gunnison National Monument, Colorado (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

“The mechanism and symptoms of addiction are identical in wireless communication dependency and terminal alcoholism,” Gary explains. “My own alcoholism recovery has given me the understanding about why information [on risks of wireless radiation] is of no use to the cell phone crowd.” 

But there is one important difference between substance abusers and cell phone addicts. 

“The drugs and alcohol are at least confined to the body of the addict,” Gary points out. “When the iPhone maniac logs on, everyone within a city block starts absorbing the radiation. And the texting addiction is constant. That phone is never off, none of them.” 

These days, Gary is parked in the desert outside Moab, Utah, in his 86-square-foot “Micro Habitat”—a converted 1972 Nomad trailer that he has retrofitted with a water catchment roof, passive solar design, a high-efficiency propane stove, extra insulation, and even a sound recording studio. His exposure to electro-pollution is limited to his weekly trip into Moab (what he terms “the bowels of digital radiation hell”) for gas, propane, food, and a quick internet connection. 

In summers, when Gary is travelling great distances through the Tabeguache area, he lives in his even smaller “Chariot”—a mere 24 square feet, which he converted from an abandoned farmyard trash-hauling trailer. 

A believer in minimalist living, Gary spend his winters in his 86-square-foot "Micro Habitat" (top right) . For his summer travels throughout the Tabeguache area, he lives in his 24-square foot "Chariot" (bottom left).

A believer in minimalist living, Gary spends his winters in his 86-square-foot “Micro Habitat” (top right) . For his summer travels throughout the Tabeguache area, he lives in his 24-square foot “Chariot” (bottom left).

As far as Gary is concerned, a minimalist lifestyle is the only real solution to problems both personal and planetary. 

“The best thing any of us can do for the environment, health, peace, and the economy is to live in smaller spaces,” he tells me. “When we reduce our domicile to less than 100 square feet per person, magic happens in terms of energy efficiency, comfort, function, and most of all junk accumulation.” 

The planet is alive—and pissed!

For Gary, electrosensitivity and chemical sensitivity are neither an accident nor an anathema. Rather, he says, they are a gift and a call to arms. 

“The planet is indeed alive,” Gary remarks. “And it is now pissed. It warned us fifty years ago to stop the abuse. Our greed wouldn’t listen. So it devised a scenario where we would. And I certainly am.” 

If anyone had told Gary Duncan ten years ago that he would be fleeing to the wild lands to live and thrive, he wouldn’t have believed them. 

“Back then,” says Gary, “I would have deemed the life I now live to be unfeasible and impossible. But it works and I love it. Bunnies know all of this. That’s why they live in holes and stay out of Moab.”

© Kim Goldberg 2014. All rights reserved.

(Gary Duncan’s story will be included in Kim Goldberg’s forthcoming book REFUGIUM: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague. Read more people’s stories here.)

Lucy Sanford: Healing Mind and Body

By Kim Goldberg

January 23, 2014

Lucy Sanford

Lucy Sanford in her days as a top-selling Toronto real estate agent.

For 25 years, Lucy Sanford was a top-selling real estate agent in Toronto’s west end. Not surprisingly, her busy life and successful career were filled with all manner of wireless devices. In addition to her cell phone and nearby cell antennas at her office, there were no less than 20 cell antennas on the roof of her residence. She also had Wi-Fi, a blackberry, and four cordless phones at home. And her fancy car was loaded with gadgets generating high electromagnetic fields. 

“I loved the technology,” she recalls. “I lived, worked, slept and breathed in this environment.” 

But, as is the case for an increasing number of people in our electrified and wireless world, there was a price to be paid. Lucy developed an extreme and ever-worsening case of electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS). The condition ultimately ended her career and sent her to the ER one night after she spent two hours convulsing in bed. 

However, it also set her on a long and fruitful healing journey, which she today describes as miraculous. 

Now, at age 60, Lucy is leading a healthy, vibrant life, and she is able to spend time (when necessary) in environments bristling with wireless devices without ill effect. She and her new partner are even thinking of building a sustainable community on a rural acreage in Ontario where they can offer their healing knowledge to others. 

Lucy Sanford today with partner and geomancer Alan Reed

Lucy Sanford today, healed from devastating electro-sensitivity and enjoying life with new partner Alan Reed, a geomancer who balanced the energies on her property.

“I believe people with EHS are the lucky ones,” Lucy tells me. “Our warning systems are forcing us to be aware of our environments and make changes and heal, as opposed to not feeling the warnings and getting something like cancer or Alzheimer’s. I would not change this experience,” she says of her 14-year ordeal with undiagnosed EHS in Toronto, and her subsequent 4-year healing journey in the much smaller Ontario town of Crystal Beach. 

The first symptoms of Lucy’s mysterious ailment, that would plague her life and confound her doctors for many years to come, began in 1995 when she noticed occasional numbness and tingling in her hands and ringing in her ears. Inexplicable nausea was also part of the equation. 

By 2000, her sleep was so disrupted that she was only getting two or three hours of intermittent sleep each night. 

“One night I went to bed, and all of a sudden I experienced what I can only describe as feeling like a bolt of lightning hit the left occipital area of my head,” she recounts. “It jolted me, my whole body convulsed, and then my bowels evacuated.” The convulsions recurred every ten minutes for the next two hours. 

Alone and terrified, Lucy called her father for help, and he took her to a hospital emergency room in Toronto. After being questioned by three different doctors for several hours, Lucy was ultimately transferred to the psychiatric ward of another hospital, where she remained for two weeks. 

“I was sent home with prescriptions for anti-anxiety pills and anti-depressants and a referral to a psychiatrist,” Lucy says. 

This pattern is all too common within the medical profession, even a decade after Lucy’s experience. So great is the medical community’s ignorance and outright denial of electrosensitivity, that many sufferers are still psycho-analyzed, drugged, and even involuntarily committed to psychiatric wards when they seek medical help for their potentially life-threatening physical reaction to wireless radiation. 

As Lucy’s symptoms multiplied (including the frightening effect of the entire left side of her body going numb and “drooping” for several hours at a time), her doctor speculated variously that it was due to menopause, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and more. Lucy was tested for Lyme Disease and Multiple Sclerosis, and given MRIs, CT scans, a spinal tap, and other tests. But her ailment remained a mystery.  

In 2006, tests showed Lucy’s body was laden with heavy metals. The removal of her mercury amalgam dental fillings brought immediate relief from some of her symptoms. 

Life became impossible

But by late 2009, Lucy was wracked with an ever-widening array of debilitating health problems—dizziness, nausea, extreme memory loss, slurred speech, intense leg pain, burning and itching, bronchitis, spasms throughout her head, numbness, chest pressure, inflamed thyroid, and much more. Life had become impossible. 

“I could no longer cope,” she says. 

Having exhausted all other diagnoses, her doctor speculated that Lucy may be electrosensitive and suggested she remove herself to a low-EMF environment on a trial basis to see if she felt better. 

A short stay on a friend's farm convinced Lucy that she had to permanently move out of the city. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

A short stay on a friend’s farm convinced Lucy that she had to permanently move out of the city.
(Photo © Kim Goldberg)

“I went to my girlfriend’s farm, and after only five days I was completely stunned!” Lucy recalls. “Almost all of my symptoms subsided enormously.” But her recovery was short-lived. In the two hours it took her to drive home along the highway flanked by cell towers, the symptoms returned. 

“The contrast was remarkable,” says Lucy. “I knew then that I had no choice. I had to get out of the city environment if I was to survive and feel healthy again.” 

So in December 2009, she pulled up stakes from Toronto, abandoned her home, referred her real estate clientele to another agent, and moved to Crystal Beach, Ontario—determined to change her life and rebuild her health. 

In the ensuing four years, Lucy has devoted herself to cleansing and repairing both her external and internal environments. She has been so successful in her single-minded campaign to reclaim her life that today she is able to go almost anywhere with little or no reaction to electromagnetic fields. She is, for all practical purposes, healed. 

Lucy bought a house on a 1/4-acre lot in a small community two hours away from Toronto, and then gutted it to bare walls so she could completely renovate it for low electrical fields.

Lucy bought a house on a 1/4-acre lot in a small community two hours away from Toronto, and then gutted it to bare walls so she could completely renovate it for low electrical fields.

Lucy’s first step was to remove herself from the toxic environment of electro-pollution and create a safe living space. She bought a house in an area with low electromagnetic fields and gutted it to the bare walls to renovate it for her condition. She used non-toxic materials everywhere since her hypersensitivity extended to chemicals as well. 

For house wiring, Lucy installed armored (BX) electrical cabling throughout her home so that the electrical wires in her walls were shielded. She also had each room separately wired, and with two “on-demand” switches per room (one for the lights and one for the outlets), so that there is absolutely no electricity in the walls of any room whose switches are off. 

And she ran DC wiring through the walls for lamps and a ceiling fan, powered by a battery that is recharged once every two weeks by the household AC. 

She had the smart meter (unavoidable in her region) moved off her house and mounted on a post on the corner of her property, and then shielded the backside with copper mesh.

She had the smart meter (unavoidable in her region) moved off her house and mounted on a post on the corner of her property, and then shielded the backside with copper mesh.

She buried the power cable coming into her home underground, and then grounded the house wiring to a grounding plate outside in the earth rather than to plumbing inside her home. She installed Stetzer filters, a Corcom filter, and an Eco filter to clean up dirty electricity that would otherwise be entering her home or circulating through her wiring from inside sources.  

She had the wireless smart meter (an unavoidable fixture in her region) moved from the side of her house out to the edge of her property. And she shielded the backside of the smart meter with copper mesh to block its radiation from reaching her house. 

To insulate her home from external sources of ground current travelling through the earth, she installed a continuous copper cable around the entire perimeter of her quarter-acre lot, and then grounded it to grounding rods at the corners of her property. 

Lucy planted 85 trees and bushes on her lot to shield her home from future sources of wireless radiation.

Lucy planted 85 trees and bushes on her lot to shield her home from future sources of wireless radiation.

To top it all off, she planted 85 trees and bushes to help shield her home from future wireless radiation. 

For a while Lucy slept in a Faraday canopy, which brought the wireless radiation down to zero under the canopy. But after she hired an expert in biogeometry to rebalance the energy in her home, she found she no longer needed the canopy so she took it down. 

The final alignment of the energies on Lucy’s property occurred in April 2013, when she hired a geomancer named Alan Reed to harmonize the rest of the magnetic lines in her home as well as the underground water veins on the property. 

“It was after Alan’s work that my healing shot forward,” Lucy recalls. 

Lucy and Alan’s common interest in earth energies blossomed into romance and now life partnership. Alan’s latest gift to Lucy was a 3,000-pound quartz crystal strategically placed on a beneficial underground water crossing on Lucy’s front lawn. 

Lucy's new partner, geomancer Alan Reed, gave her a 3,000-pound quartz crystal, strategically placed on a beneficial underground water crossing on her front lawn. Some will say the unexpected column of light engulfing Lucy in this photo is just lens flare. Lucy sees it differently.

Lucy’s new partner, geomancer Alan Reed, gave her a 3,000-pound quartz crystal, strategically placed on a beneficial underground water crossing on her front lawn. Some will say the unexpected column of light engulfing Lucy in this photo is just lens flare. Lucy sees it differently.

Clearly, Lucy was determined to leave no stone unturned and no energy field unmitigated in her attempt to create a safe haven from the electro-pollution of the surrounding world. And it worked. But unless she wanted to spend the rest of her life at home, that was only half the battle. 

The other half involved redesigning her mental landscape and literally rewiring her brain using the science of neuroplasticity. This allowed her to ultimately normalize regions of the brain (specifically, the limbic system) that go into permanent overdrive when subjected to prolonged trauma. (For a detailed description of limbic system retraining, read Cynthia Perkins’ article here.)

“For people with EHS, the parts of the brain that work to warn us about danger get stuck,” Lucy explains. “They don’t shut off. We are in a perpetual state of ‘fight or flight’, and we are not designed for that. We get sick, and then we need less and less exposure to make us sick.” 

Her inner journey has involved meditation, the power of positive thinking, a spirituality course, and copious reading on such topics as brain architecture, the unconscious mind, psychoanalysis, vibrational frequencies, Buddhism, the earth’s energy fields, underground streams, and geopathic stress. 

“I made it my job to study all of this, and it is everything I work on throughout the day,” she says. “I had to remove myself from negativity and from people who had negative outlooks. I had to stop thinking about ‘it’.” 

After two years of this intensive inner work, combined with her new life in a detoxed home, she says she was about 70 percent healed. 

“I could drive the two hours into Toronto along the highway dotted with cell towers, even turn on the heat or AC in the car and listen to music, and stay in Toronto in a restaurant or public place for a couple of hours without feeling too sick,” she recalls. “That was an amazing turn-about for me and gave me a huge amount of freedom.” 

Rewiring the brain

But Lucy wasn’t willing to settle for 70 percent. She wanted full recovery. And she sensed that the remainder of the work would somehow involve the unconscious mind—a subject Lucy was already well acquainted with, having studied it for more than thirty years. 

So she delved more deeply into brain science and discovered a program called the Dynamic Neural Retraining System, developed by Annie Hopper. 

brain“This was the last piece of the puzzle that made all the dots of everything I had learned come together. It allowed me to create my own program of self-healing,” Lucy recalls. (The DNR system involves self-directed neuroplastic changes in the limbic system of the brain, which is the seat of our fears and of our fight-or-flight response, among many other things.) 

“Those of us with EHS can get better and have normal lives through a combination of reducing and harmonizing the electromagnetic fields and radio frequencies and geopathic stresses in our environment, along with healing our minds and rewiring our brains using the science of neuroplasticity,” Lucy explains. “I am now 90 percent there and healing at a more rapid rate daily.” 

Lucy and Alan are weighing plans to develop a healing community and geomancy school on his 33 acre property in Ontario.

Lucy and Alan are weighing plans to develop a healing community and geomancy school on his 33-acre property in Ontario.

In recent months, Lucy has made multiple trips to Toronto, spending extended periods of time in highly toxic environments filled with wireless devices, loud music, fluorescent lights, high levels of dirty electricity, and many other triggers. And through it all, she felt fine. 

“I felt it,” she says of the electromagnetic fields and radio frequencies bombarding her. “But I was able to stop my reaction to it.” 

Today, Lucy considers her traumatic past with electrosensitivity to be a blessing rather than a curse. 

“Had I never gotten sick, I would never have discovered all these things,” says Lucy. “I have opened my mind and heart and soul. I am loving life, and I attracted love into my life,” she says, referring to her new life partner. “Alan and I have been discussing exciting plans to move out to his 33-acre property and build a sustainable community where we will offer workshops on the healing power of nature, a geomancy school, the power of the mind, and more.” 

What advice does Lucy have for those still struggling with electrosensitivity? 

“The most important thing I can tell anyone is to heal their mind and rewire their brain,” Lucy says. “EHS is very real, but it is a limbic system impairment…While withdrawing from the EMFs and RFs is vital and necessary to heal the body, it does not heal the mind, nor does it stop the fear and the unconscious, cross-wired program in the brain that keeps the body stuck in fight or flight,” she adds. “I meditate daily. I find something in each moment that I am grateful for. I focus on the positive. I live in a friendly environment and eat healthy food. And I surround myself with positive people and energies.” 

© Kim Goldberg 2014. All rights reserved.

(Lucy Sanford’s’ story will be included in Kim Goldberg’s forthcoming book REFUGIUM: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague. Read more people’s stories here.)

Tyler Hoffmann – Colwood, BC

By Kim Goldberg

August 15, 2013 

8-year-old Tyler Hoffmann (Photo by Janis Hoffmann)

8-year-old Tyler Hoffmann (Photo by Janis Hoffmann)

Eight-year-old Tyler Hoffmann has energy to burn. And his backyard trampoline, bike, basketball, and hockey stick each get a thorough workout on the afternoon I visit him at his grandmother’s home near Victoria, BC. 

But in April 2012, a different story was unfolding. Tyler began coming home from Sangster Elementary School in the Sooke School District with extreme headaches and fatigue. And he was having trouble sleeping at night. 

When asked to touch the part of his head that hurt, he would point to the top, his mother Lori recalls. But as the headaches grew worse over the next few weeks—to the point of nausea—Tyler was no longer able to touch the source of it, stating it was now in the middle of his head. 

Tyler Hoffmann (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

“After a few weeks of using Advil and Tylenol to alleviate the severe pain in Tyler’s head, we knew something was seriously wrong,” Lori says.   

The following month, she discovered what it was. 

“We accidently discovered, through another parent, that the school district had just finished installing commercial wi-fi networks throughout every school,” Lori explains. “This was done without informing parents. We were denied any opportunity for input,” she adds. 

Tyler’s pediatrician recommended that the school shut off the wi-fi router closest to Tyler’s classroom, so that Tyler could remain in school and complete Grade 2 with his friends. 

The school’s wi-fi routers, all active and transmitting day and night, were not being used at the time (and still aren’t) because there were no computers to connect them to. So the request from a doctor to turn off a single unused router seemed simple enough, Lori thought. The Sooke School District did not agree. 

School District usurps parental choice on wireless radiation

“The Assistant Superintendent told us that the router would not be turned off but would stay on 24/7 because they did not want to set a precedent,” Lori recalls. “I don’t have a cell phone, wireless router, cordless phone, wireless keyboard, wireless mouse or any other wireless devices in my home because I have made the choice of not exposing my children or myself to microwave radiation. The school district has now decided for me that Tyler will be exposed to it,” she says. 

Tyler Hoffmann - back to normal once removed from his wi-fi'ed school. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Tyler Hoffmann – back to normal once removed from his wi-fi’ed school. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Lori pulled Tyler out of school that same day rather than risk his health any further. And upon doing so, she was promptly informed by the school principal that Tyler’s teacher was under no obligation to give Tyler homework, marking, or evaluation so that he could complete Grade 2. 

“After we removed Tyler from school, his headaches and associated nausea completely stopped,” says Lori. 

In September 2012, his mother enrolled Tyler in an elementary school in the neighboring Victoria School District, where there would be no wi-fi router in his classroom.  

Free from the toxic effects of commercial wi-fi in the classroom, Tyler performed at the top of his math and reading classes at his new school.  

Tyler Hoffmann (Photo by Janis Hoffmann)

Tyler Hoffmann (Photo by Janis Hoffmann)

But transferring Tyler to an out-of-district school is, at best, a temporary solution, and does nothing to help the 8,500 other students in the Sooke School District. So Tyler’s family along with the Jeskes (another local family with electrosensitive children) have launched a legal challenge in an attempt to make Sooke School District classrooms safe for all children. Read their legal brief here.

The Hoffmann and Jeske families seek, at the very least, to bring the Sooke School District into compliance with the policies adopted in 2012 by the BC Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils, which call for a moratorium on installation of further wi-fi in BC schools plus a minimum of one school at each level in each district to be free of wi-fi to accommodate electrosensitive students. 

“unlawful to experiment on children”

Tyler & his sister Julianna with both be attending schools in the Victoria School District to avoid wi-fi in classrooms. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Tyler & his sister Julianna will both be attending schools in the Victoria School District to avoid wi-fi in classrooms. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

“It is unethical and unlawful to experiment on children,” says Tyler’s grandmother Janis Hoffmann. “Wi-fi is an unregulated technology that has not been tested for safety for children in schools,” she adds. “Parents have not been informed of the risks and have never been asked to sign a consent form. Ironically, the student field trips are explained in great detail, requiring parents to sign a permission slip before children are permitted to attend.” 

Tyler and his five-year-old sister Julianna will each attend school in the Victoria School District in September 2013 where they will not be exposed to wireless radiation from commercial wi-fi routers in their classrooms.

To donate to the legal fund for electrosensitive children sickened by wi-fi in schools, go here.

Text and images © Kim Goldberg 2013 (unless images are otherwise credited)

(Tyler Hoffmann’s story will be included in Kim Goldberg’s forthcoming book REFUGIUM: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague, due out in 2014. Read more people’s stories here.)

Jordan Weiss – East Sooke, BC

By Kim Goldberg 

July 30, 2013

Jordan Weiss (Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

Jordan Weiss
(Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

With sketchpad in hand, Jordan Weiss walks out his back door and perches on a rocky bluff overlooking the Juan de Fuca Strait and the forested shores of the Olympic Peninsula beyond. The only sound as he works is the occasional rustle of dry grass and the shushing of his pencil across the pad. 

For many, the tranquil and unhurried life here in rural East Sooke on southern Vancouver Island would be a dream come true. But for a teenager who is here by necessity, this paradise can also be a prison. 

“I am very isolated here,” says 19-year-old Jordan. “I have very little socialization beyond my family.” 

The reason for Jordan’s isolation is his extreme sensitivity to wireless radiation. Exposure to wi-fi, cell towers, and even cell phones causes a range of physical maladies for Jordan as well as horrifying “night terrors”—a form of sleep-walking that can result in serious injury, and has on more than one occasion. 

Weiss Family: Karen, Tom, Jordan , Colin (and family dog Keisha)

Weiss Family: Karen, Tom, Jordan , Colin (and Australian shepherd Keisha)
(Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

In 2012, Jordan’s parents uprooted the family from their Cadboro Bay neighbourhood near University of Victoria and purchased the remote house and 3-acre parcel in East Sooke in a desperate bid to escape wireless radiation and give Jordan a chance to live a healthy life. (Jordan’s mother is also electrosensitive, but his father and older brother are not.) 

The isolated rural setting of East Sooke, located to the west of Victoria on southern Vancouver Island, offers  a lower ambient level of electromagnetic radiation. (Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

The isolated rural setting of East Sooke offers a lower ambient level of electromagnetic radiation.
(Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

After much looking at rural properties within commuting distance of Victoria where both parents still work, the family found an area in East Sooke that, because of landscape configuration, offered little or no cell phone reception. A handful of houses are located on that strip of land. One of those houses was for sale. 

(Interestingly, another of these properties belongs to a building biologist who bought there for the same reason—to reduce exposure to ambient wireless radiation. At the rate electrosensitivity is increasing in the population, one can only wonder how many years it will be before “No cell phone reception” becomes a coveted selling feature for real estate.) 

“Moving out here is not the complete answer,” Jordan tells me. “It’s a good start. But, as a teenager, I still can’t go out there and do the stuff I want to do.” 

Most teenage activities are in wi-fi’ed locations—whether it’s a café, school, rec centre, or private home. Nor are teenagers inclined to turn off their cell phones when asked. 

Jordan cooks us up an omelette with his special sauce. (Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

Jordan cooks us up an omelette with his special sauce.
(Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

“They make fun of me,” Jordan says of his attempts to ask friends to shut off their phones. “They don’t want to say it, but they think it’s all in my head. I want to be around people who love me for who I am and are not always on their cell phones.” 

Jordan’s electrosensitivity first manifest when he was 11, soon after he got orthodontic braces. (This is an increasingly common scenario for many electrosensitive children due to wi-fi in schools. Metal dental braces literally become an antenna, drawing ambient radiation into a child’s head.) Jordan began experiencing blistering headaches, nausea, clumsiness, weak legs, inability to focus or retain information, and severe exhaustion. 

His mother Karen believes the underlying trigger for Jordan’s electrosensitivity may reach as far back as pre-school when his daycare for two years of his life was across the street from a cell tower. 

Jordan’s symptoms swelled to crisis proportions when the family renovated their former home and installed wi-fi and cordless DECT 6.0 phones throughout, including beside Jordan’s bed. He felt awful at friends’ homes with wi-fi, and felt great when sleeping over at friends’ homes without wi-fi. 

After much research, investigation, and visits to doctors and sleep clinics, Jordan’s parents finally identified the cause of his problems: wireless radiation. They removed the wi-fi and cordless phones from their home, and Jordan immediately improved—at least for his hours spent at home. 

“It’s like being allergic to society.”

“When we first figured out what was wrong, we were relieved,” Jordan’s mother Karen recalls. “At last we had an answer. But then we thought about what it means—it’s like being allergic to society.” 

From his balcony, Jordan surveys the rugged rural terrain of East Sooke, and the Juan de Fuca Strait beyond. (Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

From his balcony, Jordan surveys the rugged rural terrain of East Sooke, and the Juan de Fuca Strait beyond.
(Photo © Kim Goldberg 2013)

The move to East Sooke has virtually put an end to the harrowing and dangerous night terrors. Yet every foray out into the world to attend an art class or social gathering or a meeting of the local mountain bike club risks a re-appearance of symptoms due to ubiquitous wireless radiation. 

“It is really a life-altering issue that adds an entirely new dimension to almost every decision Jordan makes,” Karen says. 

Jordan is a young man of many talents. He cooks us a scrumptious omelette made with his special sauce, then sits on the sofa and plays the Djembe (an African drum) with gusto. He tells me he would someday like to create graphic novels and design video games. A display case in the hall holds an impressive sampling of his sculptural works and other art. 

Yet with electrosensitivity dictating where he can and cannot go, limiting his training opportunities as well as social interaction and future workplaces, Jordan faces more challenges than most young people in discovering his path through this world and how to ply his talents in it. 

Jordan playing the Djembe. (Photo © Kim Goldberg)

Jordan playing the Djembe.
(Photo © Kim Goldberg)

In earlier years, he had wanted to be an architect. But now, the prospect of spending years at university—awash as they all are in wi-fi, cell towers, cell phones, iPads, laptops, and myriad other wireless devices—seems out of reach. 

Last winter, Jordan was training to be a ski instructor at Mount Washington on Vancouver Island. But the presence of a cell tower, plus the radios they all had to carry, nixed that plan. 

Most people, if asked to describe their ideal life, would talk about getting a piece of land, or finding that special someone, or having the time and money to write novels, or just kicking back in a thatched palapa on a tropical beach. 

When I ask Jordan what his ideal life would be, he immediately replies: “A life without pain or sickness.” 

And to a large degree, that is what he now has at his new home in East Sooke. His special refuge is rugged East Sooke Park, located just below his home. He visits it frequently with his Australian shepherd, Keisha. 

“I have always been drawn to flowing water,” Jordan tells me. “There’s one spot I hike to at East Sooke Park with Keisha—it’s overlooking a chasm. There’s water crashing all around me, and I just lie there until Keisha wanders off and I have to go get her.” 

Text and images © Kim Goldberg, 2013 

(Jordan Weiss’s story will be included in Kim Goldberg’s forthcoming book REFUGIUM: Wi-Fi Exiles and the Coming Electroplague, due out in 2014. Read more people’s stories here.)