It is almost the end of January and I haven’t posted anything since December. That’s because my life has been in a state of upheaval for months. Well, that is ending. I’ve moved from North Idaho and settled back into my former (and now current) hometown in Northern California, in the Klamath National Forest. The Lord has blessed me greatly here during the last few months.
To make this simple… this post is a short life update.
I was living in Post Falls, Idaho a year ago. I’d been there around six years, and was suddenly given the opportunity to travel. That’s what I put my heart to.
I bought a van in May 2019 and set out to see the continent, but first was drawn back to my hometown in the forest. This place makes my heart sing. There’s a legend that if you put your feet into the Klamath River, you will return to it.
I spent July here, then returned to North Idaho to empty out my apartment. It took about two months. I gave most of my possessions away but kept some books, art supplies and household items. It was too much to fit into my van. I bought a cargo trailer. In the end I was in a hurry to get back to California, and left half my things in a storage locker in Idaho. I’m going to have to go back to retrieve these things later this year after the snow melts.
On October 12 I arrived back here in my hometown, and since then I’ve been living in my van. It is a hard existence. Many think it sounds like fun, and I thought so too until I did it for six months. I’ve slept in my van from July 2, 2019 to today. I’m still living in my van.
I planned to go south for the winter, for better weather in Arizona. I wanted to go to Jamie’s Van Build in Parker, Arizona in November, and had already paid for entry to that event. I also wanted to go to the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous in Quartzsite, Arizona, which happened this month. However on Sunday October 20 I woke up and heard the voice of the Lord talking to me. He told me to spend the winter in Happy Camp! I was shocked and appalled at this because I was so ready to get out of the cold, and thought Arizona was the answer. Here’s a journal entry I wrote that day.
Living here this winter involved two different RV parks and a lot of cold mornings. I had to stay at RV parks because I need to shower for community meetings, especially church. My van has no shower. I don’t even have a good heating system. I don’t consider my Buddy propane heater a good option. I’d rather be cold!
The big change is that I recently graduated from the RV park to a more permanent location – a mobile home on a half acre of land. I’m pretty excited about this. I got into the mobile home on January 22, 2020 …. exactly 20 years and 10 days from the day I originally moved to this town – January 11, 2000.
Even though I have a mobile home now with all the needed amenities, I’m still sleeping in my van. Old habits die hard and I’m happy with my bed there.
So – this is why I haven’t been posting much lately. I came into town today to use the internet at the library. I’m still trying to get a phone and internet connection at the mobile home. There’s an application process. I’m going to be so happy when I finally get internet access there because right now, my cell phone barely works when I’m at home. So inconvenient! But I’ve lived through worse. I’m looking forward to learning more about God’s plan for keeping me here.
One huge factor is my creativity. I am a creative: a writer, artist, and videographer. I also have a guitar that accompanied me on this journey but never got used. Vanlife has been terrible for my creativity! The Lord knows, and now I know, that I need a home base to be able to stay productive.
Last night I wrote 5000+ words for a book length memoir I’ve been planning with my friend, Judy. Our plan was to spend November and December making outlines and other decisions about our memoirs. The background work. Then, throughout 2020 we’ll write one chapter per month.
There’s nothing more motivating than the last minute. I was totally unsettled in the van situation most of this month, but yesterday finally got my desk chair and table out of the cargo trailer which my son kindly put into my yard the night before. After several years as a truck driver he is an expert trailer backer upper.
The chair and desk I retrieved from the cargo trailer are essentials for my creative life. I put my computer on the desk, had electricity, had heat, and wrote that chapter all in one sitting. Good thing, as February is right around the corner.
I have to go now. I have other blog posts to write. Catching up. That’s what today is about.