The previous posts have been icebreakers; a way for us to open, slowly, the door that is us and allow a few of our ideas to permeate the cyber world. Now, we would like to share, on a more intimate level, who we are, our current profession, how we achieve van life, and where we are going. I must confess there is nothing spectacular, over the top, or extraordinary about either of us. We are your average, everyday run of the mill folk.
I, the narrator, am Alan and the behind the scenes guru is Monique, my partner, love, and best friend. Together we bring the less than exciting “us” to you. I could describe our features in some sublime grandeur that elevates us to the status of greek mythology, but for simplicity sake I will attach a picture to the bottom of this post. Go ahead, scroll down if you’re anxious to meet us. We are just as eager to make your acquaintance. I will let you, the reader, make your own assessment on our characters. I’m usually over generous to myself and my loved ones in this area. Now that you know are physical features I shall delve into our occupation and the life of van living.
We are currently in the occupation of painting. No, not artistic painting, but house painting, exterior painting, and any other thing an individual might consider needing a fresh coat of color. We are not however limited to painting We also do a wide variety of construction related and independent work, e.g., drywall, roofing, general labor, murals, playing banjo venues, creating postcards, and making prayer ropes. If you feel you could use our talents at any point feel free to contact us. We are always open to opportunity. The latter are for our personal enjoyment and we rarely make, financially, much on the projects. This allows us to work for ourselves and define our schedule as we choose, our compensation as we deem acceptable, and our gigs based on a mutual, respectful understanding of client and laborer needs. There is a joy and successful feeling which accompanies such negotiative practices. We both feel that with work, or any other aspect of life, one should have a feeling of worth and dignity. There is far more to health than the physical and we consider this fact with everything we do. It is part of the reason we live in a van.
Yes, you heard correctly. We live in a van. No, not a spectacular sprinter van or even a small camper van, but in a minivan. A Kia Sedona to be precise. It’s rather luxurious too. You may be wondering how we achieve this so I’m going to elaborate. We live frugally and have another vehicle. The second vehicle, a Mercury Sable wagon, doubles as living quarters when we are in separate areas working independently and as a storage/work space when we are working cooperatively. This tremendous advantage allows us to pursue many possible paths that may not be accessible any other way. We use both vehicles just as you would a house, i.e., we cook in it, sleep in it, eat in it, hang out in it, clean it, and care for it. A majority of our equipment is camping related which allows us to save space while still having modern luxuries, e.g., cooking on a gas stove. Another beautiful thing is our level of invisbility. We blend into any environment and surrounding as if we belong; exception being when we navigate 4X4 dirt roads to access a remote trail head. So the next time you see a Kia parked in your suburban neighborhood it might just be two free spirits sailing their ship on the waters of life. A wonderful addition to van life is we have an amiable friend named Lyla living with us.
Lyla came to us from the pound in Flagstaff Arizona where we found her smiling in good spirits despite her filthy appearance, less than adequate size, obvious neglect, and very noticeable abuse. There were some veterinarian bills and social introduction exercises that were needed for her recovery, but they were well worth the time and expense. Lyla herself is what we define as a mut. She seems to be a mix of a few different breeds and no one seems confident of her exact makeup. She isn’t the biggest, fastest, or strongest, but she does have personality. You can see it through her almond gaze and her fun loving excitement of life. She is a joy and pleasure to have. Also, if you have any questions, concerns, or general inquiries feel open to express them.
“Success: the liberated internal state.” ~Team Juice Box~
Alan has blonde hair, Monique is the only lady, Chris is the far left, and Clayton is the photographer.