Do you have anything you obsess over?
For me, it was and still is “Van Life”. I love everything it symbolizes: freedom, exploration, minimalism, adventure, and an inspiration to get outside to enjoy what I believe to be the best things in life. For years, I followed every Van Instagram account I could find, idolizing couples and families that were bold enough to buy a van, build it out, and adventure on the road while still maintaining stable income, successful careers, and a healthy lifestyle. I truly believe I am allowed to want AND can have both van-life and a successful career. Our civilization so often puts a stigmatism on living aboard a boat or buying a cargo van to travel.
My aunt and uncle, in their 40s, are such an inspiration and have been chasing the fresh powder in their Mercedes sprinter van for over a decade. They were doing it before it was cool! Not to mention, I lived on a boat for a period of my life so the love for adventurous homes runs deep in my veins. Despite all of this, making the move to buy a van felt distant.
Do I want to live in it full time right now? NO.
Is it still okay to make this large financial purchase if it is just my weekend adventure mobile? Maybe…
Can I even handle the build-out myself? Dad, I have a father-daughter project idea…
Will I actually use it enough? I think so…camping, surfing, and snowboarding are my passions.
So many questions ran through my head, and I was definitely doing as much research as possible to try and answer these questions, but nothing online was going to hit me like the 2 things that gave me the definitive answer I needed.
- With the boyfriend starting an outdoor brand that’s tagline is literally, #EnjoyTheExploration, It felt like it just fit into what we both passionately love, believe in, and want to share with the world. We so often hear people say, “chase your dreams”, “do what you’re passionate about”, and to me, this van represented exactly that.
- A TRIP. Steven, myself, and another couple who we venture with often went on a trip of a lifetime. The 4 of us traveled in a van from Bordeaux, France down the coast to Lisbon, Portugal. AND LET ME TELL YOU, it was living! We had nothing but a van, a lot of surfboards, and only what we could carry on our back. The memories were real, raw, and so fulfilling. The realization that you can sleep in any city you want, wake up to whatever view you set for yourself, and enjoy it all with whimsical distractions from things that typically take away from the beauty of humanity... what more could you want?. On top of this, we learned that Europe is years ahead of the US in regards to the acceptance, stigmatisms, and build out capabilities compared to the US. Van life is EVERYWHERE in Europe and is enjoyed by all ages and types of people. It was inspiring.
Fast forward and here I am, the excited owner of a 2018 Ford Transit. Deciding which year, make, and model wasn’t easy, and choosing a layout and beginning construction isn’t any easier, BUT it is rewarding, fulfilling, and exactly what I want to be doing.
Follow along as I build out and venture in the PARKIT adventure mobile.
Enjoying the Exploration
- Lauren R.