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A Van Conversion Feels Like the America I Gave Up on 14 Years Ago

I left the USA 14 years ago, I want to return but I refuse to walk back into the same American rut for this USA road trip.

Andy G (Gadget),


Van convert

Many people are sending me e-mails about,
"How to do a van conversion."

Buying is an Americanism, and making work where there is no work is an Americanism.

I am not going to convert a van to anything....

I do not want a converted van, I do not want a van, I am going to buy a mini-van to travel around the USA, I have no choice.

I refuse to do this too silly for words thing of buying, fixing, planning, and both spending all my time doing, being too busy to enjoy life. That is the America I walked away from 14 years ago.

What do I really need?

I need a "Hotel Room" that can move.

I am going to buy a space, about 8 feet wide by 10 feet long, a square area, with a light in the center of the ceiling.

If you think about it, that is what a Hotel room is, a 10 x 12 area with light in the center, then they put a bed in the middle.

All I want is space in the back of a van to sleep, I am not going to convert anything, maybe put up some curtains.

I am always amazed how the American culture wants to spend money.

I am always amazed how American invest in things that do not pay off.

I am always amazed how they can feel guilty when they are doing nothing.

I am not going to do work to a van, I am going to sleep in it. I hate the whole idea of owning van, it is something I need because the USA has horrible public transport and American has priced the country too expensive for living.

Thanks, but no thanks, I left the major parts of the USA culture behind, and I am never returning.

Andy Graham

2012 March 28: The Start of My USA Road Trip by Andy Lee Graham

Boondocking Defined

Boondocking Map

Budgeting and Prioritizing is Constant on USA Road Trip

Comments

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Page Turner  99 comments.

Did you ever think of going from place to place on a bus? Perhaps stay longer in each place in cheap housing and go to all these libraries you find everywhere and talk about your book?????


davidavid08  20 comments.

Let me "help" you here.

"I refuse to do this too silly for words thing of buying, fixing, planning, and both spending all my time doing, being too busy to enjoy life. That is the America I walked away from 14 years ago."

Some people are slaves to the above. Others are slaves to digital media. It's the same shit. We all have our talents and like to express them. I have gotten joy from building and using a van. Others get their joy from Facebook, building web sites etc. Different strokes.

'I am going to buy a space, about 8 feet wide by 10 feet long, a square area, with a light in the center of the ceiling."
All I want is space in the back of a van to sleep, I am not going to convert anything, maybe put up some curtains.

The only vehicle that will give you that kind of space is a box van. The gas milage will suck. I have traveled a lot in a van. I have NEVER found a need for that much space.

"I am always amazed how the American culture wants to spend money."

It is because they HAVE money, or, more likely, credit, to spend. The illusion is that owning shit will make you happy. Owning my farm makes me happy. Owning my car, not so much.

"I am always amazed how American invest in things that do not pay off."

All one really needs to determine how an investment will pay is a calculator. Americans don't believe in math because they are very bad at math. This explains why so many play the lottery.

"I am always amazed how they can feel guilty when they are doing nothing."

Personally, I don't feel guilty doing nothing, but I do get bored. Projects give me more reason to live. Maintaining a web site is not "doing nothing". I had a business once. It took up more brain space than any building project. Thankfully, we have all kinds of people with different talents and aspirations. It is what make a culture.

"I am not going to do work to a van, I am going to sleep in it. I hate the whole idea of owning van, it is something I need because the USA has horrible public transport and American has priced the country too expensive for living."

America has been homogenized. Ninety per cent of it is not worth a look. Same ol same ol most everywhere. Were I you, I would research the "where to go" part of this trip very carefully.

"Thanks, but no thanks, I left the major parts of the USA culture behind, and I am never returning."

This I totally understand. But if you are going to spend much time there, you will be subjected to the culture. I am fortunate to live in a community that has learned to work around the worst parts of mainstream american culture and live more sane lives. They are called hippies.


Read more: http://www.hobotraveler.com/road-trip-usa/a-van-conversion-feels-like-the-america-i-gave-up-14-years-ago.php#ixzz1p1131Hch


phil  74 comments.

I'm 71, buried under piles of crap, and projects...Im now trying to get rid of it all, now that i have an online business that I can live on.

what a hassle. If I had any brains I would just give it away. and hit the road.

Congratulations on stepping out of that scene

I like my motorhome however, I can stop, rest, and eat whenever I want. Thats nice. A porta potty and an electric ice chest in small van would work pretty well too. Ideally a van you can stand up in however. Ive done that also. 25 years now.

But Im getting older. a 4 star hotel in Tailand for $300 a month is starting to look pretty good... maybe I will do that. what will I do when Im 80 or 90? a man needs a place to settle in then. Im looking around now. maybe a 'tiny house' in the woods by a creek, a short drive to a food store would work.

with broad band and world wide friends its hard to get bored.


If you do a stand up van, fit one or two more batterys to it, so the battery doesn't go dead when you camp out for a day or two... the ice chest will run longer that way. You can have a cold drink, and make a sandwich whenever you like, and run your laptop for long spells at a stretch.

Ive always carried a small generator for when my battery dies, thats a life saver in many cases... they don't last long though..it pays to use them only to charge the batteries occasionally.


phil  74 comments.

One more thang... net books with super long battery life are good for much of what you do on line, and with 3 or 4 extra batteries you can charge on the road or when in coffee shops you can lay in your bunk and be on line without using your van battery. Verizon Broadband is the best coverage. 10 gigs/mo for $59. No roaming nationally. but check that for sure.

It took me a few months to get used to the small screen, but its fine now.

I hang mine from the overhead cabinets on a cord through the hinge and lay on by back ..I can do that 16 hours a day.. no problem. Sitting up can be a lot more tiring.


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