We’ve been on the road again for almost a month. We left Santa Barbara with the intention of never really going back, and drove south towards San Diego, across the Southernmost landscape of California, and into the dry heat of Southern Arizona. From Phoenix, we voyaged north to Sedona and Flagstaff, then east towards Colorado. Now we’re in Denver, enjoying the slow death of summer and the beauty of fall’s crisp chill and captivating colors.
Yes, currently, we have no home but this van.
It’s been a pleasure. The sense of having a home that remains in one place in a familiar neighborhood has become a distant memory. All we know now is what it’s like to be on the move every day: a new street block to park at, a new town, new scenery, new people, new territory. The cultural changes that happen within states is astonishing.
So as we experience the art of raw van living, we’re starting to realize that meaning is more tangible than it ever was. Living nomadically and minimally are the two main titles of our lives right now. We can’t have too many things in the van, our fridge is small, being conscious of finances is essential, and learning to live with what we have has become the new norm.
This life has made us far more conscious of things that we struggled to be aware of in the past. For example, shopping seems trivial now (unless it’s an absolute necessity.) Material goods aren’t really on our minds anymore, we’re disidentifying from being the consumer, and identifying as actual humans who can create things more than we buy.
Food cravings have sort of disappeared now that the days feel so fulfilled. We don’t eat out anymore. All we have is each other, the dog, and the life outside of the van. What exists out there is a giant world, even if we don’t travel much in a day, and that world is abundant with possibilities galore.
While living as extreme minimalists is sometimes difficult to swallow during moments of doubt,
we remember that the true value in life lies in us as people, the power that we have, and the intentions that we live by.
Living this simple has been the ultimate reality-check. You could almost say the days have been whittled down to near boredom. But they’re not. An entire day flows by in a matter of minutes. The things that we are learning now from each other and the world are shaping us into better humans faster than it was in our old lives. Absolutely no regrets here.
So, what do we do in this super minimalistic life of ours?
We eat a clean diet, exercise plenty, nourish our minds with a good game of chess or a book, spend 75% of our lives outdoors and in nature, and gaze at distant sunsets. Through these instinctive daily practices, we naturally gravitate to enjoying each moment that exists. And I know we probably all hear this on repeat – live each day as if it were your last – but honestly, you can’t really grasp the full expression until you actually experience it. And the van is literally forcing us, in a good way, to live moment-by-moment. Because whatever happens tomorrow, for better or for worse, will make you appreciate the day that’s been left behind.