Back to VAN
If we're going to be homeless anyway...We were only back in portland for a few days when we got the call to help out with the beach house remodel again. Maybe the biggest benefit to our freedom and schedules is being available to just this type of thing when others need us...so we hopped in the van and drove back to the coast (where we seem to be spending ample time this year for the first time ever).
A few days of siding and painting and hanging artwork and the place is pretty much ready and the project done, which means brent can return home to his wife and kids (and be around for us to enjoy)... Success!
Instead of returning to PDX we drove straight north to help celebrate Chad's birthday in BC. Our places are still booked anyway, and if we're going to be working and sleeping in the van, we might as well be doing in while traveling and celebrating!
Jen did the majority of the driving while I got some design work in...and we talk at least once every long day of driving at what a sheer pleasure the sprinter is and how much it is helping achieve our goal of traveling/exploring more often. In that regard alone, this vehicle is proving worth its weight in gold.
We spent one evening in Vancouver doing the typical birthday happy hour drinks, toasting and eventually cheersing at midnight to ring in the birthday. Chad had decided that he wanted everyone to join him for sunrise yoga/bro-ga, so we also woke a handful of hours later and I attended my first ever yoga/vinyasa class in tribute to the birthday boy. If you cant make a fool of yourself in front of 50 strangers for a good friend, whats the use?
Another day of work for our friends and the entire vancouver family (#vanfam) headed out of town. We grabbed our perfect roadtrip food (noodlebox, when will you stop torturing me and open in the states??)... and drove back up to the cabin in whistler for the weekend.
Half of this group snowboards/skis all weekend every weekend throughout the season and this is the farewell tour as their season draws to a close. We know it's sad for them to see it go, but its also clear they took advantage of just about every day of it and we certainly don't see any sad faces in the mix. Part of what we love about this group...they all work hard but they also always find time to gather the group together, to exercise and to take in the things that they love/enjoy.
While most of the group hit the slopes we opted once again to enjoy the day "chad style"- at the fairmont spa with a steam, a soak and a few ceasars hillside before meeting the group for apres. Not a bad way to spend the day, and easy for us to splurge a bit knowing it's a "holiday".
The rest of the weekend was spent enjoying each others company, enjoying good food/drink and in celebration. Sunday we returned to town early to take advantage of the perfect warm weather for some beach volleyball. Insert deep long winded sigh here....Oh how we've missed volleyball.
We played for hours until darkness took over and everyone had to leave to prep for the workweek. We played until we could barely walk and we played again the next day. The weather was perfect and it felt fantastic to move our bodies and sweat and stretch muscles that have sat dormant for a long season of winter.
It awakened a part of us that longs to be more active and take better care of our bodies and we talked about it much of the drive back home to portland. Talked about exactly how much of our summer we could spend in vancouver doing just that. Focusing in on friends and volleyball and on getting fit.
We have cheap housing in the van, and in VAN. We have the ability to work remotely. We have the freedom to be wherever we want to be... we are slowly doing the mental math and it seems that for much of summer that's what we will do and where we will be based as we continue to redefine the term "home".
Speaking of home...on our way back to the states we may have gotten sent to secondary inspection (again) and we may have gotten denied access to our own country for 4 pieces of firewood that we brought from the states to begin with!
Talk about a country trying to give us a sign to stay away... no big deal, except that they sent us back to canada where we had a good laugh with the mounties about ridiculousness of it all, and then promptly returned to the US border to wait another hour for re-entry. Thanks!