As you would probably guess, almost everyone who is living at Twin Oaks prefers our lifestyle to that of the "mainstream" world. But, we are still actively working on making this place better. We don't pretend that this is paradise, or utopia, and if that is what you really want, you will have to look elsewhere (when you do find it please send us a postcard and we might move).
We encourage you to ask Twin Oakers about what they like and dislike about being here and how it contrasts to the world outside of our community. The answers to these questions should help you frame your thinking about whether Twin Oaks is the right place for you.
Also consider if all your basic needs are met, can you live on $2 a day? Will you be comfortable with lots of public and common space and relatively small private space? Can you cooperate with people and share goods and responsibilities? What are your needs and desires around community?
Living like a Twin Oaker
While you are here we ask you to follow certain rules. The main reason is so you experience your 3-week visitor period in a manner that is as close as possible to how we generally live. Then you (and we) can make the best informed decision about membership. Specifically, we request you:
Drive your car as little as possible - If you need to get something from town, learn how the TOR system works and get it picked up for you. If you need to go yourself - see if there is someone already going to town in the Vehicle Log in the Llano main office. We carpool a lot here.
Spend no more than $75 in the three weeks - The personal allowance at Twin Oaks is $2 per day. This needs to cover all the things that you desire which the community does not provide, including: phone calls, cigarettes, chocolate, alcohol, and specialty foods.
Work Quota - You need to make quota for the time you are here (37 hours the first week and 42 the second and third week). For some people this is easy, for others it is a burden. It is one of the things that you need to know about yourself and living here. Similarly, we suggest you do not work a lot over quota, for it will give you a distorted view of living here. Don't work when you're sick - when you are sick your job is to get well again; it is creditable up to 6 hours a day. Many visitors get sick because of the change in climate, diet, lifestyle - please don't try to work when you are sick - it sends the wrong message about you and can expose other people to your illness. Lighten Up - take advantage of your time here to dress comfortably or silly, tell people how you really feel, don't brush your hair, perhaps put a flower in it.
Making It Work at Aurora
Another aspect of living as we do at Twin Oaks is setting up the norms for your visitor group's behavior at Aurora. In this sense Aurora is like other Twin Oaks SLGs (Small Living Groups) in that it sets up its own code of behavior. Your visitor group should get together, ideally in the first few days of your visit and make decisions about the following issues:
Heating and Cooling
You are free to set these as your group agrees (we suggest that you use consensus). We do require that you not smoke anywhere inside Aurora (also no incense). You can smoke on the front deck, if this is acceptable to your entire visitor group.