We Are Nowhere . . . And It’s Now

We’ve been in one spot longer than we have for the past year. This embodies the push and pull we face as we weigh all we have, all we are leaving behind us, and all we still yearn to find. Consciously choosing to lose things is something we still embrace, though not without a tear or a flash of regret. Avoiding a tear or flash of regret, though, is not our mission.

The Nowhere Van

As our dear friend Bob pointed out, parting ways with Sandy is just part of the journey. So, with this post we share that we are changing the blog and Instagram to reflect our evolving lives. The IG account and the blog will be The Nowhere Van. These words are from a song title written by Conor Oberst for Bright Eyes. We are using it without permission, but with love and respect. Embedded in this post are lyrics from the song, out of order, but lassoed to my thoughts.

We are nowhere and it's now
We are nowhere and it's now
And like a ten-minute dream in the passenger seat
While the world was flying by
I haven't been gone very long
But it feels like a lifetime

Sandy’s (?) new owners, Jessie and Christy, have been beaming with love and optimism about coming to fetch her. It means a lot to us that good souls will drive her away. Yes, it’s just a bus, but we’ve sweated and bled over every square inch. The cover pic is Sandy in the last pretty setting we stayed in, Phoenix Fruit Farm in Belchertown, MA.

One loss we embrace is a sense of time. It’s a cliche to retire and lose track of days. It’s another to be out of step with the lives of those we love and miss. We know now that we can’t both hold things close and gain new things. So, we choose to keep moving as a way to do both. It’s a mix we strive for, akin to the flight of a hunting falcon, free and aloft, yet always circling the target. It’s a fine balance.

In our wheels that roll around
As we move over the ground
And all day it seems we've been in between
A past and future town

We’ve been staying in Connecticut, hosted by the most generous and patient of friends – Steven and Evelyne – who have opened their home to us. In our zeal and distractedness, they’ve anticipated needs we didn’t even realize we had. We couldn’t have done this without them. Literally. We’d have been stuck. We hope we can repay the generosity now and in the future.

On a practical note, we have to move into the van. It’s been hard to work on the build. Neither one of us has uttered, “Next build, we’ll . . . “ We are so done. We’re pleased with the results, but it will be hard to give up the best bus bathroom ever. On the other hand, I am looking forward to the drivability gains – zooming to see Drew and Natalie and Tate, hitting 25 miles of washboard to the Chaco Culture National Historical Park, or winding through the Moki Dugway. The new build is all electric – no propane, so we’ve had to stress optimizing our solar array. We should be able to have 700 watts on the roof, plus 200 watts remote. We have also done a two-inch lift with tire and suspension upgrades. All this, of course, is designed to get us who-knows-where.

The best gifts are the little things, like the Brady Pincushion cactuses, waiting to show themselves when we’re paying attention.

Did you forget that yellow bird?
Oh, how could you forget your yellow bird?
She took a small silver wreath and pinned it on to me
She said, "This one will bring you love"
And I don't know if it's true
But I keep it for good luck

We’ll be on the move again soon, circling a bit before launching. You all know how that goes.

3 thoughts on “We Are Nowhere . . . And It’s Now

  1. I love the magic pantry. What a brilliant idea. For our next build I hope to add a shower and now I think a magic pantry would be a great addition.

    Congrats on your new rig. You are going to love going to all those places that were difficult to get to before. Chaco Canyon is amazing and the Moki Dugaway is quite an experience. And being able to drive and park in a city is great. I don’t know what we’d do if we couldn’t get into a Trader Joe’s parking lot.

    I’m glad your bus went to good people. We have been through one boat and one other van. We didn’t meet the guy who bought the boat but the guy who bought the van seemed like he was going to take good care of it.

    I’ve always said that you can’t do this traveling life alone. It takes support from friends and community. We would have never gotten as far as we have without those people. And they all become part of the journey.

    Do you have lithium batteries? Besides cooking, lights, and charging things, what are you powering? I would love it if our next build is all electric. Our lithium batteries are amazing. We could probably get rid of the gas stove now.

    Happy adventuring!

    1. Hey Duwan, we love to hear from you! We have a 4 gallon electric water heater which uses about ten percent of our 400 ah battery bank for one cycle. Previously our biggest use of propane – at least in cold weather – was the furnace. In the van we have a Wabasto gasoline heater.

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