At some point around the middle of last year, it occurred to us that the need to pay for our house and all the stuff in it was the only thing keeping us from doing what we truly loved – being together as much as we’d like, living a simpler life in touch with nature, having a plethora of new experiences, meeting and helping many more people, making spontaneous decisions based on how we felt on a given day, and living our own adventure instead of just following the conventional and “safer” path in life. We were trading away the best years of our life for the almighty steady paycheck so that someday we could enjoy everything we earned.
Forget “someday” though, what about now? What if some unforeseen reason like poor health, a freak accident, the zombie apocalypse, or financial problems meant there was no “someday” out there waiting for us?
We asked ourselves, “If we knew we only had __ more days/months/years to live, what would we do?” The answer was immediately obvious: we would travel.
Late last year, to better cope with the dissatisfaction in our mundane daily routines and the depression that inevitably set in just after and in between vacations, we started joking about ditching our house and figuring out some sort of mobile career so we could just start traveling full-time. The jokes persisted, and after enough time didn’t seem so far-fetched anymore.
We realized that the most realistic option and easiest entry method was an RV. Maybe one day when we don’t have pets anymore we could go a step further and start backpacking on other continents, or cruise all over the world on a sailboat. For now though, we needed some semblance of a home base for us and the 4-legged kids.
We “joked” about these plans so much that – in a moment I still look back on and wonder “what the hell were we thinking?!” – we purchased a beyond-fixer-upper vintage Airstream. The first one we looked at. On a whim.
Neither of us had ever owned, driven, worked on or even camped in an RV before the day we bought ours. We had always thought these silver trailers were beautiful though and we were handy enough with home improvements after two house renovations, so we took the leap into RV ownership before we could even second guess ourselves. How’s that for kicking off a life of spontaneity and adventure?
A year spent renovating the Airstream to be our cozy little home on wheels kept us too busy to make many plans for what would happen post-completion, but it didn’t take long after the trailer finally started to feel livable to question our sedentary life. Couldn’t we be just as happy in 150 square feet as we were in 2,000?
With the support of one another, complimentary digital marketing and web design skills, and word spreading quickly through our social networks after a couple successful freelance projects, we made the decision to leave our emotionally unfulfilling jobs and start our own business – first I (Kristin) quit my job, then Jason a few months later when the work load became too much to handle with his help only in the evenings and weekends. We knew the opportunity to seize more control of our life and spend more time together was a requirement for us. It was a HUGE risk, but one we knew we’d always regret not taking, even if we failed trying.
As much as we love our home and the town we live in and are grateful for all it has given us, including the opportunity to meet one another, make some amazing friends, and find lots of success professionally, we need to see something else now. A lot of “something elses,” to be specific.
After our recent month-long, inaugural test trip in the Airstream, it was more apparent than ever that full-time travel is the next logical (or illogical, depending on how you look at it!) step for us. Keeping a sticks and bricks home has become a greater source of stress than pleasure. Daily life seems so predictable that it’s almost unbearable at times, and we’re having trouble fitting back into our old routines and social expectations. We know that we can only be happy waking up every day not knowing what new and exciting experiences will present themselves. Wanderlust has taken a firm hold on us and “the norm” is no longer sufficient.
Our house is now officially rented for a year starting in September and we started getting rid of most of our stuff, which is easier than we anticipated, knowing that the end result is full-time travel. Finishing touches are happening on the Airstream to get it ready to be our new house, and we’re learning and doing as much as we can to make our personal and business transition to nomadic living as smooth as possible.
We want to sincerely thank all our friends, family and clients who have supported our dream, whether with physical help, advice, hiring us to work for you, or just friendship and encouragement. We truly couldn’t have done it without you, we definitely won’t forget about you, and we’ll be back to visit — or better yet, come visit us on the road!