Before there ever was a van there was just a dream; of travel, a family and a home.
The home would be small with large windows and a garden outside. Long sheer curtains would line the wood window frames and blow freely in the breeze from ever open glass panes. Bamboo wind chimes would hang in a tree outside and would lull me to sleep and awake, each morning and night.
There would be no TV, no microwave, but instead an excessive amount of books and a guitar in the corner.
And if I was ever lucky enough to find a man to share this dream, we would fill the air with the aroma of coffee and red wine, and with the sounds of our own terrible out of tune music.
And in the evenings soft voices reading aloud to each other; Feasting on Bukowski and Christina Rossetti and all the "come to me's" and ”be with me's" that ever were written.
And during day, the sun's rays would beat upon and brown my body, as I played outside with plants and weeds and water, and cooking and with paint.
And at some point there would be a wild barefoot child. And I wonder what that kind of love feels like...
Someone wise once told me that you won't find love, until you become love. And until your exhibit the attributes and behavior that you are looking for in a partner.
And so I threw myself into personal growth and into building this life I dreamed about. And I hoped that someday someone might join me.
I worked for 3 years saving all the money I could, and then I found a man to build me the house. He lived out of state, but was reputable and agreed to all that I wanted. It was going to be a 8×20 home on wheels. Wheels of course, for travel.
During the beginning stages of our planning this man acquired a old trailer which he also planned to renovate into a small home.
When I saw the pictures of this 1969 vintage airstream, it was love at first site! We went back to the drawing board and came up with a whole new plan.
In three months this was going to be my home!
One year later I was a heartbroken mess. It seemed every possible thing that could have gone wrong, had. Complications with the structure, multiple injuries at the worksite, a tree through the roof, the worksite getting shut down. In the midst of all this a second contractor was hired (unbeknownst to me), and after performing a small amount of work, he took the rest of the money and left town. Communication was also a huge issue. I was told of this situation on the same day I was driving there to pick it up.
I felt embarrassed and defeated. I should've known better. And I most definitely should not have paid in full after the initial first payment was exhausted.
Luckily I had purchased the van as a towing vehicle, and when all the drama started happening with the airstream renovation, I threw myself into my own van renovation, with the help of my father.
At that point I decided that whenever the airstream was complete I would to use it as a vacation rental, until the day I tired of van life.
In December, I still had no news on the airstream. Last I had heard they were waiting on funds before they could resume progress. I was beginning to wonder if I would ever see it again. But I did not want to go through a lawsuit so I continued waiting.
In January I packed up the van and set out on the open road. I love it! And could happily live this way for quite a while. What makes this difficult, is that I still have a hefty airstream loan payment, that I will need to continue making for the next several years.
A few weeks ago I was surprised by an email "the airstream is almost completed".
I had just finished a bike ride with Brian in Dana point, CA. I sat on the van floor, a sweaty mess, and cried.
Since then there has been more drama and more inconsistent communication. But whether it's done or not, I going to be there next week and I'm going to haul that thing away.
I'm still debating about what I'm going to do with it... Honestly, I need to see it before I make any decisions.
Somewhere deep down I still have that original dream, though now there is so much anxiety and uncertainty attached. I am afraid to see it, afraid to hope. Afraid of my dreams being broken once again.
Friends, if you have thoughts, prayers, positive energy, good vibes, please send them my way! This was a huge investment and the source of so much stress and turmoil. I'm trying to mentally prepare myself but I really don't know what to expect.
For good or bad, it's going to be an emotional week.