With the cost of living crisis, housing crisis, and what feels like a new crisis every week - the thought of giving up the rat race completely and just living a simple life in the bush is becoming more and more appealing. 

You could grow your own food and never have to fork out $7.50 on an average cucumber wrapped in plastic again. 

You could chuck up some solar panels and not have to worry about pesky power bills. 

And you wouldn’t have to worry about the landlord raising the rent at the same aggressive rate  the mold in your bedroom grows. 

It sounds freeing. 

But what would it actually take?

This week Re: News is finding out what ditching the rat race really looks like. Welcome to Re: News’ Off The Grid Week. 

To kick off this week, on Monday Re: News journalist Baz Macdonald tests his limits by trying to survive two days in the bush with no food, little supplies, wet boots, and a whole lot of bugs. 

On Tuesday, Re: News journalist Anna Harcourt talks to Sonny Ngatai about dropping out of university. She explores whether getting a degree - and all the debt that comes with it - is really necessary.

On Wednesday, Re: News journalist Te Ahipourewa Forbes speaks with period underwear brand AWWA co-founder Michele Wilson about why her employees are encouraged not to work when they are on their period

On Thursday, we revisit the Wicca community and find out why Wicca - a modern neo-pagan syncretic religion - empowers and makes women feel safe. 

Last year, on the night of a full moon in March, Re: News visited New Zealand’s first official Wicca church for a full-moon ceremony in Auckland.

On Friday, we’ll have a video for you where Re: News journalist Baz Macdonald asks people in Queenstown if they feel prepared for “the big quake”. 

On Saturday, Re: News journalist Zoe Madden-Smith speaks with Rangimārie Mules about why she and her partner Jared pooled their money together to build their own tiny home on whānau whenua in the Hokianga. 

Rangimārie tells it straight about what the off-the-grid lifestyle really takes. 

And on Sunday, we finish off the week with a photo essay by Zoe Madden-Smith about 30-year-olds who are choosing to live at home with their parents. 

This story was originally published in 2021 - but the need for intergenerational living hasn’t changed. 

We hope this week of content will give you a taste of what living off the grid could be.