Sunday, May 20, 2018

VanLife Day 12 or Home Is Where You Park

Downtown Manhattan Kansas - Small Town America

The conventional wisdom is that you find what you look for and I think that's true to some extent when traveling from community to community.  I have always had the ability to find friends and interests in any community I would find myself. 

Back in the late 90's I traveled around in a 24 foot Class C Motorhome and loved it.  I was blowing glass and traveling from craftshow to craftshow with a several different promoters. 

Many of us who traveled consistently with a show promoter did so in an RV of some shape and size.  We would all pitch base camp within the general vicinity of one another and form a little mobile neighborhood.

We'd do all the things that one would do in a neighborhood: throw block parties, have potluck dinners, invite the neighbors over for a barbecue, and even sometimes complain about our neighbor.  Some of us would even try and keep up with the Joneses.  We were always comparing RV's, gas mileage, and storage capacity.  Yes, size matters.

We'd each venture into the larger surrounding community and it was always interesting to hear the stories that made it back to camp, some good and some bad.

Once you got to know the people in our little traveling caravan you could almost guess what kind of experience they were going to have in any given community and at any given show.  It was very consistent and I think it was because they found what they always found because that was what they always looked for.

The same folks time and time again would hate this or love that.  They would have a rotten show or a good show.  Everyone's experience would be different but each individual's experience would be consistent with their general outlook.

I was often teased because I can always find something good in every place I travel and delightful people everywhere I go.  I think that's because that's always what I look for.  I roll into a community and I get excited by just arriving.  I start looking for the interesting, the unique, and the fun in every situation.  Sadly, that's not true of everyone who travels.

I will soon pack up and head off to a different city with a different crowd of folks and most likely a different climate.  I don't know what to expect specifically but I do know what I'll probably find there in general because it's what I always find.  It will be interesting and full of learning experiences.  I'll meet some neat people, have some fun, and find some beauty in whatever place I visit.  It may or may not make my favorites list but I'll no doubt enjoy it for what is.

My mentor in the Episcopal Church, Fr. James Martin, once said that I was the type of person to be at home wherever I hung my hat and he was so right.  Now, I would add, home is wherever the Kraken and I park.