The Van Life
The simplicity of van life is calling me again. What most of you don’t know is that I have done the van life, way before it was a popular topic for blogs, videos and Youtube.
I feel the itch to downsize even more, travel and wander. The life and simplicity are calling me again. I would have to be much more resourceful this time. Previously, I had resources, from working hard and saving, to buy a quality travel van and support my extended travel. Now, I have limited resources, limited income opportunities along with aging and shrinking confidence.
I lived out of my beloved VW camper for 3 summers in my 30s. Those were some of the best experiences of my life. I learned so much about myself and the world.
Here are some of the many realizations I had while traveling.
- I learned that I didn’t need much stuff to be happy. In fact, I felt better living simply, focusing on enjoying life, traveling and being in nature. I had sold and given away many of my possessions before the trip. The rest was in storage and only my most cherished and needed possessions were with me in the van. I grew to realize they were really all I needed.
- I discovered a deep love for nature. This began my lifelong love affair with nature. I became a hiker, conservationist, photographer and appreciator of nature. She has served me well. I cherish nature and encourage others to fully appreciate the amazing planet we live on.
- My health and confidence grew as I hiked up and down beautiful mountain trails around the country. I had always been more intellectually focused than physically. I found that my attitude and well being surged by the simple act of daily hiking. This was probably a combination of time in nature, following my joy and lots of fresh air and exercise.
- Following my joy opened up many new worlds, within and without. I explored many of the beautiful US National Parks, particularly around the midwest, northwest, southwest and southern Canada. I also reveled in the peace of simply relaxing or appreciating a beautiful vista. Previously, my life had been lived in fast speed, always rushing off to the next task to be accomplished.
- I met wonderful people from around the country and world. I realized how sheltered my life had been and how self-centered we are in the US in the sense that we know so little about other countries. Most people in other developed countries speak multiple languages and are conversant about the people, culture and politics of many countries.
So, I’m itching to hit the road again, but have no idea how to make it happen. My resources, attitude and options seem much more limited than when I was in my 30s. Does anyone have a travel van that they want to sell me cheaply, trade or loan me? 🙂
I also know that my travel itch surfaces when I’m dissatisfied with my life. So wandering off may or may not help the fact that I don’t have a sense of direction or purpose in my life. All of these are nagging issues that have been with me for decades. Time will tell what I choose to do. Meanwhile, maybe I’ll become more Zen, here and now, chopping wood and all that stuff!
Peace and love, Brad