Yup, the scary part is these are mid-tier conditions. Think about futures and what pros like Amir Weintraub have to go through (love his blog). That goat might end up being your dinner if things don't fall into place, and they usually don't.
I think it's time that someone records a documentary on the life of a futures/challenger player. Year-long chronicle, it would be great television.
It wouldn't sell to the masses sadly, then again this is not a good thing. The South Americans have it tough when it comes to tennis, but as you said a lot of them were already from rich backgrounds.
From an interview with Luczak
How were the early years of being on the ATP tour and did you have doubts that you’d be able to make it?
The final exams, I left with a smile on my face that lasted 3 days. It was a mixture of excitement, high confidence level and I thought it was just normal, competing, traveling and getting ready for the experience.
24 hour Greyhound bus rides, as I was not a rich kid at all. There were a group of 7 of us in a basement of a house, 2 beds, 1 couch, and the rest slept on the floor. Before the tournament we would play games of cards or chess to decide who would get a bed, once you lost your singles match, and then you were on the floor. I got the nickname of “Lucky Looch” and “Diablo” because I was always winning these games and getting the bed. One of the guys traveled with a stringer, so he was able to do all of our racquets. When it came to food, there were the 29c McDonalds burgers, I would have 5 of them in one sitting, eating 2 minute noodles and the free player lunch.