Meet Rumblebee; 33 years old, orange shaggy carpet and dark wood veneer. A fridge that works, sometimes. My vintage, ¾ ton with the 360 engine makes Rumblebee a skookum-big, gas-eating, camperized travel van. No whiny VW dream for me. HEAR ME ROAR.
One of the best features is the toilet I can use anytime, and I do because I am almost 60 year old woman who had a couple of kids which means my pee reflex is controlled by gravity more than muscle. Too much information? Just in case you are wondering, number 2 I save for gas stations, cafes, and highly tolerant friend’s houses. The Bee is mortgage free, and the dwindling possessions I don’t have with me are stowed in what was once a chicken coop at one of those tolerant friend’s.
Most asked question: Where are you from? Generally British Columbia, but no known address, so right where I stand before you.
Other most asked question: Aren’t you afraid? Yes, definitely afraid of a predictable life where the winters are cold and wet and I have a low paying 9 to 5.. And yes, sometimes of the unknown and of the price of gas. I’m not Superwoman.
It’s late for me to save up for retirement. I blew that on a late gap year that turned into three after my kids were launched. So, I have boxes of art and cards and a massage chair and table. And I have a novel to sell. It COULD happen!!! And I have a soul-sucking job I can fall back on.
I am constantly challenged to find the coolest free-park possible. It is the measure of success for me. I cruise into a new town, eyes wide open for some place where the traffic isn’t too loud, noting where the ever present community of like-minded camper vans are parked. Yes, I know that Walmart offers free overnight parking but that isn’t my dream. It will do it in a pinch because I am cheap but free is only one part of criteria. There is a million dollar view and green space somewhere; the kind of place you wake up to and say, “I have a groovy life,” before that other thought comes in and sabotages everything; the “How can you sustain this?,” big, scary, sometimes soul petrifying thought. I am either the really cool, independent, brave, in charge of my own life gypsy, or I am the flaky, irresponsible, what the hell are you doing? You are going to end up like your mother. Anyways I do manage to hit boon-docking jack-pot most of the time. Places with birds and rivers and big green fields that I can kick the door open in the morning for the 4-legged co-pilot to get out while I flip the bed up and make the best coffee in town.