Friday, June 8, 2018
VanLife Day 30 or It's Been a Minute
You may or may not have noticed that I haven't posted a blog entry in several days. This is in part due to laziness and in part due to not liking the way the blogging was going, or perhaps the way the writing was going. It seemed that as I struggled to do a blog post a day, the content of the posts became watered down or contrived and I began to offer very little in the way of the meaningful content.
I'd rather this blog not become a journal or simpler still, a calendar of events. As a result I will not be pushing to blog every day. I'll make a post when I have something worthwhile to say instead of cataloging the daily drudge.
With that being said, I thought that this day, of all days, was a milestone of sorts. As of today I will have spent thirty days living and sleeping in the Kraken. Much has evolved since the first day and night and hopefully that trend will continue as I iron out the wrinkles of living in a van.
I can honestly say that I love it as much as the first night and I'm looking forward to many more. It has been very interesting and informative for me personally and I can only assume that will continue.
Now that doesn't mean I don't miss the people, places, things, and routines that made up my everyday life before I embarked on this adventure. I do and sometimes it's intense. I'm a wanderer at heart but the Ozark Mountains and my family and friends there pull at my heart strings and lure me home with a continuous tug.
So, what have I learned in 30 days? Well, I've learned that I can tolerate not bathing daily. While I now have access to a wonderful bath house and even more wonderful shower, for which I am thankful, I know for certain I can also find ways to feel clean and refreshed without a daily shower. For me that was huge! While my default is still to have my daily shower if at all possible, I take great delight in knowing that that routine is not absolutely critical for my continued comfort or cleanliness.
I've also learned that less is more. When shopping for food I still fall back into old patterns if I'm not careful. I'll buy multiples of things to get a better deal, even though storing multiples of things becomes exponentially harder the more items you have in your cooler or pantry. I try to buy smaller amounts and just what I need for one to three days in an attempt to let the local grocery store or Walmart be my larger pantry to storage facility.
This works well for fitness as well. It forces me to shop more often and that forces me to bike or walk more often and that's nothing but good for me. I've also learned to keep my panniers on my bike! Several times I went to the store without them and schlepping things home on my bike without my bags was no fun. Follow the Boy Scout motto: semper paratus - always be prepared.
I'm also learning how to cook with one simple pot instead of a whole kitchen of pots, pans, dishes, and gadgets. It's a challenge to plan a meal in a sequence that lends itself to culinary success.
Some things I'm also working on are: accepting help when it's offered, never turning down a free meal or free food, never turning down an adventure without a really good reason, never passing up an opportunity to use bathroom facilities, utilizing power facilities whenever I can for charging electronic devices, and not to be in so much of a rush to arrive that I forget to enjoy the journey. I stop and smell the flowers more often now and it's wonderful.
These are just some of the things I've learned and am working on over these last thirty days. This is as much an inward adventure as it is an outward adventure. To love so well the world that I try not to take a minute of my journey for granted. Thanks for sharing it with me on this blog!