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Farm/Ranch/Construction Help in the Austin TX Area

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    Farm/Ranch/Construction Help in the Austin TX Area

    Howdy folks. Fellow BeastForum refugee here. I'd been a member over there for 6 years, but I've been in the broader zoo community for much longer than that. Yes sir, my tenure stretches all the way back to the days. I am sad to see BF go after everything we built there, but then I've seen zoo communities rise and fall before. So first off, my sincerest thanks to our new staff here for carrying the torch and giving everybody a place to call home! I hope to see more familiar faces in the coming months as they land here. "A little revolution, now and again, is a good thing," sayeth Connery. Now its up to us to rebuild Sodom & Gomorrah!

    So I want to revisit a thread I'd started on BF some time ago. I own a few acres out in the country near Austin, and I've got a few animals started. But I have many years of hard work ahead of me to rehab this place into what I want it to be, and take on more animals. What I need is to make a good friend or two who can help, and what I'm hoping to find is a fellow man who can handle the lifestyle out here. Someone who wants to live and work towards it with me.

    Let me give you the good news first, to butter you up some, lol. About the animals: right now I have a cow (yearling), bull (calf), and two intact male dogs. One is a fawn-brown dane/pit mix about a year old, the other's a black lab/shepherd mix about 6 months. Both of them are experienced. In the coming years I plan to add a few more dogs to the pack, as well as a mare and stallion, and yes even pigs! Probably start the equines small as an experiment, like ponies or a jack/jenny pair (donkeys). But there's a lot of work to do out here before all that can happen. The humans need a roof over their heads first, and for that I've got a massive project that needs doing: there's an old singlewide mobile home out here with a good roof and bad framing. It needs a complete in-place demo & rebuild. No telling how long it'll take. But after that I can turn my attention outward to rehabbing my land into pasture, get a grass crop established, and take on more animals.

    About me and the 'ranch': I'm a mid-30s intact male (lol). Bisexual across the board with humans & animals. Love motorcycles, old trucks, anything with a manual transmission. Cooking, eating, drinking beer and whiskey, reading books, learning how to fix or build things. I work by day, then wind down the nights with my animals or take long walks under the stars. Like so many others of my generation, I have a tech (IT) background, but I left that behind several years ago to reinvent myself as a different man. I've worked in automotive, so I can turn a wrench. I've worked in construction, so I can swing a hammer. I've worked as a ranch hand, so I can build fence. I'm something of a jack of all trades, master of none. You can stick me somewhere between renaissance man and redneck white trash, har har. I'll admit I'm not very good at any of the trades, but I do have exposure to them, so I know enough to get by. Life out here is a series of chores, repairs, and projects. From one week to the next I wear a different hat. I might be under the truck cussin' gettin' greasy fixing something, or out in the woods with the chainsaw felling a tree. Might be firing a nailgun to frame something, or striking an arc to weld something. Chaining heavy objects to the tractor to move 'em, or digging, fencing, wiring, plumbing, composting, you name it. There's never a shortage of something to fix around here.

    I live cheap and minimalist. I'm not organic, not solar nor off-grid by any stretch. I may be out in the middle of nowhere but I'm not that far from civilization either, so I still have neighbors and yes we have to be very discreet as zoos. And I still have basic utilities like water, electric, inet. However, I do strive for minimalism as a lifestyle. Examples of that include: me living in a shitty old gutted RV as my long-term temporary housing til I finish rebuilding the trailer. I use fire for heat in winter and live without A/C in the summers, favoring alternatives like evap cooling, fans, shade hammocks, keeping my shirts wet when I'm working outside, etc. I dug and built an outhouse to get off dependence on the trailer plumbing. I dry my laundry the old-fashioned way on a clothesline, never a dryer. I cook instead of buying prefab meals. I shutdown my water heater by June and take cold baths thru the summer because they feel great after a hard day in the heat. I sit out under the stars at night with my animals and we drink to the radio instead of TV. I'm often unemployed by choice for variable lengths of time so that I can stay home out here and do my own work instead of workin' fer the man. I've weaned my dependence on money, but that also means I have to live a very frugal life -- pinch my pennies til they scream. Everything's old here, very "rustic". I build out of scrap as much as possible before I buy new materials. I'm constantly finding ways to MacGyver my repairs out of nothing. I'm a firm believer in the 'Use what you have on-hand' principle and I don't waste anything. The trailer rebuild, however, will definitely be new materials -- can't fudge that one from scrap.

    What I'm saying is, you should be aware that country life is NOT for everyone! It takes a certain breed of person. To pull it off, you must learn to live on minimums. I came to this life because I wanted it (and the animals) badly enough. Its a hard life, its an austere life. Its a solitary, lonely life. Its a stark and beautiful life. It'll break your heart one day or brim you over with joy tomorrow. You'll cuss and throw things in frustration one minute and be laughing your tail off the next. Its challenging but rewarding for the right sort of man. Its blood, sweat and tears and we shed all three out here. You give up some things to gain others; you go without this or that to have something you couldn't have anywhere else. You toughen up into a man. And you find you're enriched the better for it later; you learn how to do things you never would have elsewhere. The highs are high, the lows are low, but taken all-around you ain't alive anywhere like you are out here. That's me in a nutshell.

    Now, about who I'm looking for: older men (30s and up) preferred. Not trying to age-discriminate here so if you're still young, you are welcome to respond if you jibe with everything I've written, but be honest with yourself in that country life may not be for you if you're still 18-25ish -- unless of course you were born into this life already. So roughneck men to the front of the line! It'll be great if you've worked any of the trades or blue-collar jobs in the past, or still do. You don't necessarily need to know building trades since I'm not great with them either, but general blue collar work helps shape a man. It teaches us what hard work means and how to do it, how to put up with it, how to get dirty, and how to draw pride and satisfaction from it by day's end. "It builds character", as Calvin's dad would say. It'd also be great if you have your own dog already, since that shows me you're a serious zoo and can be responsible with animals. And I don't want to come off sounding like a dick here, just being as realistic as I can with y'all: if you work in an office, live on take-out, sink your time into video games and facebook, can't live without A/C, panic at the sight of a bug or a snake, never re-wear a pair of pants twice before they hit the wash, drive a late-model car/truck without a scratch on it, and step each morning into nice clean dry boots I could eat from the soles of, well then, best reckon with yourself in admitting you're probably not the type to survive out in the country! That's what I mean when I say it helps to come from blue collar already; you're toughened to it, you know what to expect.

    ... Of course, none of this is set in stone either. After all, I was a city boy once too. Use this as a guideline; I will know the right person when I've met him, and it could be enough that we hit it off so good as friends that the rest just falls into place. Example, you could be none of the things I described but instead you are a lone-wolf introverted type, sick to death of city life, who wants to learn how to work with his hands and would acclimate easily to country life. Or you could be working part-time and living close enough to help some days a week without living here. I myself don't know exactly what shape this thing will take. Can't predict the future any more than you guys can. I'll only know it once I'm in the thick of it. And this is undoubtedly a long-term search I'm running; I'm not expecting it to fall into my lap right out of the gate. So get at me if you like what I've written and you feel like you're a good fit. Don't be shy, I'm approachable, and the dogs won't bite neither! Likewise, don't be discourged by an old post either -- I may not keep bumping this thing forever, but I bet I'll still be looking for a long time to come, and the majority of responses will likely come in PMs so the thread may look dead even though it ain't.

    Whew. Shit that was a long post. Boy howdy, thanks fer stickin' it out with me. Til then, you stay classy Beastforum -- er, Zooville.

    Sounds like paradise! I’ve stretched a few barbed wire fences myself and set the ornery posts in the ground. An all round handyman myself, just good enough with fixing things that I don’t need to send off for help.

    But I think I’m too old for you. I remember where I was when JFK was assassinated, to give you an idea. Not a dog owner either, living in an apartment where it just wouldn't be fair to keep a big Rottweiler, my favorite partner.

    i think you have the beginnings of a Garden of Eden there. It must be nice to actually see the stars at night. I wish you the best of luck...hope you find a good partner to help you.
    Some people are animal lovers, I like dogs that are man-lovers lol


      I am a carpenter that live in the austin area. I would love to come and help sometime if you would like, that trailer project seems like it could be fun. I am 30 year old bi male that has worked on many a farm doing all sorts of stuff. I actually just joined this site because I saw this add and thought it was written just for me. I am more than happy to give you photos of work in private, just message me