Massachusetts couple who live on an off-grid farm in PANAMA reveal brutal downsides to their remote lifestyle – from suffering through freezing cold showers to going SIX YEARS without a TOILET
- Kaylee Dubeau and Jordan Saglio bought land in Panama for $75K four years ago
- Since then, the parents have gone about building an off-grid homestead
- While their life looks dreamy, they say it isn’t easy and there are downsides
Living the dream life isn’t always so dreamy — as one Massachusetts couple have revealed.
YouTube content creators Kaylee Dubeau and Jordan Saglio spent years traveling through central America in a converted school van before settling on the leafy climbs of western Panama.
The couple — who have more than 390,000 subscribers — purchased a 2.5-acre plot of land on the outskirts of Boquete for $75,000 four years ago and since then, they have gone about creating a farmstead while welcoming their first child, Sadie.
When they moved to the empty plot of land, the couple had to go about building everything from scratch before they could finally move out of their school bus.
While Instagram posts show them living the ‘dream life,’ a series of candid YouTubes reveal the harder parts of their off-grid lifestyle including living without a proper toilet for six years and always getting stuck with higher prices in Panama because they’re considered foreigners.
Kaylee Dubeau and Jordan Saglio, from Massachusetts, spent years traveling through central America in a converted school van before settling on the leafy climbs of western Panama
The couple have more than 390,000 subscribers on their YouTube channel
To earn a living, the couple run a coffee shop and sell beans sourced from local farmers. They also run a popular YouTube channel
They purchased a 2.5-acre plot of land on the outskirts of Boquete for $75,000 four years ago
Since then, they have gone about creating a farmstead while welcoming their first child
In one YouTube video titled ‘We Have Regrets Moving To Panama,’ the couple – who run a coffee shop and sell beans sourced from local farmers – address some of the downsides of living abroad.
Firstly, Jordan says one of the the things that makes it a ‘little bit challenging’ about life in Panama is ‘buying stuff because we get “gringo” prices.’
He continues: ‘So because Kaylee and I are clearly are not from here, because we’re foreigners, we get priced at a different price.
‘It’s a higher price [for us] and this is with everything from buying a car to buying property to taking a taxi to even buying fruit or food on the side of the road.’
Jordan says that any time a price isn’t listed, especially if it’s a big purchase like a car or a piece of land, they have to get a Panamanian to go and negotiate for them on their behalf.
He adds: ‘So I think you can imagine how sometimes the biggest purchases in your life, like a piece of land or a car or stuff like that, it just adds another layer of complexity having someone else involved to kinda like negotiate and help on your behalf.’
Next up, Kaylee reveals that the ‘trash situation’ in Panama – especially in the cities – is something they didn’t expect.
‘Unfortunately pretty much everywhere you look here there’s just trash,’ she says.
‘And whether it’s like buried in with the dirt or it’s just blatantly piled up on the side of the road, it’s one of those things that they just don’t have the systems in place here to dispose of it correctly or recycle it correctly.’
While Instagram posts show them living the ‘dream life,’ a series of candid YouTubes reveal the harder parts of their off-grid lifestyle including living without a proper toilet for six years
To power their homestead, the couple have gone about installing a wind turbine
The couple had to go about building everything from scratch before they could move out of their school bus
On a personal note, Jordan says he’s found his allergies are out of control in Panama.
He explains at one point: ‘For about five or six months out of the year I have a nasty allergy that’s some kind of pollen or some kind of dust.
‘It’s so bad that my face is so puffy and even the strongest allergy medication doesn’t even do anything.’
Jordan says the only time his allergies stop is when is when it is raining, so he is just having to ‘learn to love the rain.’
On the food side of things, the couple say they find it impossible to find organic produce in Panama, and pesticide and fungicide usage is ‘very, very high’ because of the tropical climate.
As a result, they end up buying lots of fruit and vegetables that are imported from other countries.
Finally, Kaylee says: ‘Something else that I regret that I definitely did not think that I would feel as deeply as I do and I think more so now because of Sadie, is how much I was going to miss our family.’
In other YouTube videos, the duo reveals the hardships of starting a homestead.
They say growing food has been difficult and it has taken them four years to learn what does and doesn’t work.
They also survived for many years without a proper toilet.
While living in their school bus they experimented with a bucket, and when they moved to their farm they installed an 8ft deep pit latrine.
Kaylee strikes a pose next to their beloved school bus, which served as their home for many years
They say growing food has been difficult and it has taken them four years to learn what does and doesn’t work
Despite the downsides, Jordan and Kaylee remain determined to make their off-grid lifestyle work
In a YouTube posted just over a month ago, Kaylee and Jordan revealed how they finally went about constructing a proper outhouse complete with a flushable toilet.
They said the outdoor latrine was ‘gross,’ and they had to venture out to use it ‘in the rain, in the wind’ and as it neighbored a public trail, people would occasionally walk by.
After moving to their farm, they also went seven months with cold showers, but eventually they fixed it up to a hot water heater.
To power their homestead, the couple have gone about installing a wind turbine.
Despite the downsides, Jordan and Kaylee remain determined to make their off-grid lifestyle work.
In one Instagram post, Kaylee reveals what she finds most attractive about their way of life, telling viewers: ‘I knew at a very young age that I always wanted to live on a farm.
‘I don’t know exactly why I wanted to – especially because I never really spent time on a farm or truly understood what that life actually looked like.
‘Maybe it was my inner child intuition pointing me in the direction of my destiny or maybe it was just the simplicity of it all living off the land, caring for animals and just being closer to nature that I felt so drawn to.
‘All that I do know is that my soul has never felt more awake and alive than it has in the last three years since we stepped foot here on Lola’s farm.’
Over the years, the couple have built a loyal fanbase with their followers praising their tenacity.
One fan left a comment for Kaylee: ‘You are a beautiful person inside and out. Your little girl is so fortunate to have a mom like you.’
Another commenter from Australia addressed the whole family, writing: ‘You, Jordan and Sadie have been my Zen these last three years, watching you build your dream life in Panama and your beautiful pregnancy.
‘You have bought my daughter and I so much joy, thank you to you and Lola’s farm, all such amazing people and wonderful fur babies, BIG love.’
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