I've always had itchy feet and the need to travel and explore hence becoming a truck driver and a runner. Both enable(d) me to see so much of the US and a bit of Canada, it's also why I managed to find so many good friends while living in the UK when so many expats have trouble fitting in. While the 5.5 months we spent living out of the car and traveling Western Europe while my partner searched for work was not ideal and incredibly stressful it provided the opportunity to see and experience so much. I feel like I was more immersed in the cultures of different countries because we weren't doing the touristy things and staying in hotels. Our travels by necessity required us to stay off the beaten paths and we learned how to survive on very little. Luxury for us was buying a kettle that operated via the cigarette lighter plug so we could have a cuppa sort of on demand, it usually took 20-30 minutes for the water to boil!
I now know where to find free wifi, wild camping spots and public loos in 10 European countries and counting.
Scouting out places to run while on this journey also resulted in some grand adventures and encounters like the time in the Dordogne region of France when I met a woman walking her dog in the forest who could have been a sister we looked so much alike. We were both so surprised to see the other and I was pleased to find someone who spoke English so I didn't have to stutter through my almost useless grasp of French! I've also enhanced my dirtbag runner skills with the ability to get changed and cleaned up quickly in all sorts of circumstances.
might think this has dampened my enthusiasm for rough travel but in fact it has only enhanced it. I'm now back in the US and once employed again will be looking for a van to convert to a camper. The ideal situation would be to have one here and to have one in England--the latter seems to have no shortage of affordable second-hand sprinter vans that get much better fuel mileage than their US counterparts! Watch out for updates on our progress but in the meantime check out our youtube channel about our travels and travails.