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Modern Living: How To Stop Paying Rent And Live In A Yurt

By Jim Bochnowski in News on Apr 29, 2015 8:30PM

Some residents of Chicago have pretty cool cribs, and we're not just talking about the penthouses along Lake Shore Drive. In fact, the Chicago Reader recently posted an interview with a Chicago woman who lives in a yurt in an abandoned lot. For the uninitiated who don't know what a yurt is, it's a round, domed tent that can be easily transported by camels and is used traditionally by nomadic people of central Asia. Or in the case of Kara W's yurt, it can be transported by friends in a van. Kara says she lives in it because she "doesn't believe in paying rent."

She's been living in the structure since last May, even surviving this year's cold Chicago winter. Kara obviously has limited space, so she gets by storing everything in milk crates and cooking on a propane stove. One of the challenges of doing so is that mice become a problem, since the yurt is insulated with straw, but she gets around it by tying her food to the top of the structure.

As far as the decoration goes, Kara provides an anecdote. One day, she took too many psychedelic mushrooms and realized she was shaped like the letter "W," so she proceeded to decorate the outside of the yurt with whales, wolves and the constellation Cassiopeia, which is also shaped like a "W."