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You People Are Crazy

July 15th, 2007

Well, Jenn and I both have jobs at the same company. We’re IT folks. Overall, it’s not a bad job. In fact, the only real complaint we have most days is that we have to be there instead of elsewhere.

Recently, our company merged with a larger company. In theory, we’ll be assisting with the migration of our existing customers and then continuing to work with our colleagues in the larger company. In reality, the parent company is located 400 miles or so away and the majority of our existing systems will be shutdown. There is a fair bit of thought that we may become redundant in our current locale.

At this point, I can’t even remember exactly how the topic came up, but basically, Jenn tossed out Chris Farley’s line from SNL – ‘living in a van, down by the river!’ I think she was a bit shocked when I said it sounded like a good idea. I know I was shocked that she agreed.

Personally, I’ve always had a kind of fascination with living a self-sufficient lifestyle and traveling as much as I liked. Unfortunately, I think I was beginning to buy into the generic American Dream – you know the one: a big house, two cars, big yard and a couple of pets to kick. It’s the kind of lifestyle that requires a couple of moderate to large incomes and everybody working 40 hours a week. But why do I want these things? Because everybody else does? As it turns out, I don’t think I want any of them, with the exception of some pets to kick.

We talked about the idea a bit and jokingly tossed some things around, neither of us ready to admit that we really wanted to do this. But over the next couple of days, we kept digging up sites on the net. People really live in vans and motor homes. Most of them even enjoy it! Slowly, we were convincing ourselves and each other that we could in fact quit working 9-5 jobs and travel full time.

For the first week or two, we kept pretty quiet about our plans, thinking that any responsible family members would think the idea of a couple of 30-somethings quitting relatively successful careers was nuts. So far at least, both of our families have been pretty supportive of the idea. It helps that Jenn’s folks lived in a camper full time for several years and my family has always had some sort of RV as long as I can remember.

It’s nice having a few people out there that may think we’re crazy, but are at least willing to give us a bit of advice without telling us outright that we’re off our rockers. Still, I’ve gotta wonder just how my Dad, who worked hard everyday of his life – and worked my brother and I pretty hard as well, feels about raising a kid whose newfound goal in life is to ‘work as little as possible’.

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