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Well, Week 2 went by like a flash. I’m not going to lie, morale is low and I’ve been ready to quit more than once. I regret that I don’t have a proper vanlife van that I can actually convert and do more with, but I’m thinking of making some conversions when the weather is nicer and I have more funds. There’s so many things that I wish I could do to make it more comfortable, and I know that things wouldn’t suck as much if I could do that. But I had in my mind that I still want to be able to use all seven seats in my SUV if needed, so completely getting rid of the extra seats feels like I’m wasting the future potential.
I definitely don’t see myself living this way longterm, not without some proper conversions. For me the main thing I struggle with is having to find public ways to do everything except sleep. I can’t afford much in terms of food right now, either, so really I am more on the homeless spectrum than vanlife spectrum, and I have to rely on the foodbank and community meals and things like that. Which is difficult as a vegan as well, because it’s hard to find public meals that also accommodate my food lifestyle.
It’s hard having to plan around when public restrooms are going to be open and making sure I drink water accordingly to avoid having to use my emergency toilet, which is actually kind of gross. But on the bright side, I did discover the secret shower at that gym I’ve been going to, and I had a full shower for the first time in weeks today. That felt so good and really boosted my mood.
What has been lowering my mood is the cold at night and not sleeping well because of all the restrictive layers I have to wear to keep warm. It’s technically not been prohibitively cold, but I’m just hoping that I can get those Reflectix soon so that I can winterize the car a little more. That will really help. But in general it’s been a mild winter, as long as you have a warm place to sleep, which as you know a lot of people do not.
I met a man the other day who’s struggling the same way I have been, with what exactly we want to do in life and how to get out of our situation of homelessness. It’s really not as easy as just going out and getting a job. Both of us have done that. We’ve worked and we’ve played within the system that’s not built for people like us, with complexities that make the traditional life so challenging. It’s not as simple as just putting our minds to it, because we have done just that, to no avail. Life isn’t as simple as some people try to make it out to be.
I tried to see if one of my friends still had their old apartment that I could potentially stay at, but that was a no go, so I guess I’m destined to stay here for a while. I was disappointed at first, but maybe this is my chance to do this right.
People keep telling me how dangerous what I am doing is. Honestly, I can’t advise it to anyone, but I think the main thing is finding a place where you feel comfortable parking overnight. I’ve been blessed to find that, so as long as I don’t get kicked out I feel pretty good about where I am. It’s really not that bad. Once my finances get a little more straightened out, I’m really going to try and travel more and do everything that vanlife is supposed to let me do. Enjoy flexibility and freedom, connection, all that. With some adjustments and potential conversions, this could be really exciting.
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“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him.”
~ Romans 15:13