Over the past five years that my husband and I have been married we have continually sought time together. Uninterrupted adventurous time. When we got married we had two weeks for a honeymoon but the Army put a number of restrictions on what we could do. So we planned that we would take a month off when Michael got out of the army but it didn’t happen. Then we planned to take a month off when I finished graduate school but it didn’t happen. Needless to say when Michael began to plan for finishing graduate school we both knew that month off together had to happen this time. Luckily, its safe to say, 49 days away, that it is going to happen!
This has been an evolving dream that has taken time and experience to form. It began as a desire to backpack through Europe, then it morphed into taking Military Space A flights to anywhere, then it morphed into building a camper and driving it across the US to Asheville, then it changed to doing the Camino de Santiago de Compostela. And finally we have found ourselves in a glorious place to do the Camino de Santiago de Compostela and return home to drive across the US with our truck camper. This trip seems enormous but I cannot stress enough how its has naturally formed over our five years together.
Our plans began to solidify last Spring when our house caught fire and we lost most of our belongings. We were homeless for about two months as we choose not to stay in a hotel to be with our dog and avoid moving in and out of a hotel room. From the day of the fire, our homemade truck camper was a refuge as we lived in it for two months looking for a new place to live. It was during this time our life was paired down for us. We couldn’t believe how much stuff we had until we had to put it into a spreadsheet to show the insurance. After completing a 3,000 + line spreadsheet we knew we could never go back to that way of living. It came to my attention that having a lot of stuff is a HUGE burden, especially after a house fire, flood, or break in. Being faced with the reality that insurance will give you some money but you have to first remember and catalog each item has made owning superfluous stuff a risk to be avoided.
It was at that time that we realized we had the ability to do the Camino. We lived out of backpacks for two months and rarely missed any of the other stuff.
But as I was closing down my private practice and turning down a chance to renew a therapy contract, I realized how much work taking a month off was. I began to contemplate what other productive things could we do with time off. We might never be as unattached as we are about to be. No jobs, no house, no kids, no debt. Wow. It then became a part of the plan that we would move to Bend Oregon. We had always dreamed of moving there as we have been driving down for long weekends at least twice a year for five years.
We then began to plan ending our lease and packing up everything into a storage unit. It then came to my attention, where will we live for a couple days before we leave and when we get back. The camper!
THEN… I thought, if we are staying in the camper and everything we own in storage, why not take that cross country trip!
So here we are. Planning to pack most of our belongings into a storage unit, put three months of stuff into the camper, go do the Camino, come home to drive across America and visit all the family and friends we possibly can and then move to Bend. I can’t wait to see what happens!