Where will we go next?

The Adventures of James and Vincent

This incredible journey started in the year 2016 when I packed all my worldly belongs into storage, loaded my car with everything I thought I could ever need, and drove off west.  This 2016 Road Trip gave me a lot of perspective for what a life of travel could be.

Cut to a few years later, I got to repeat a very similar road trip in 2019.  This time was different, I knew a whole lot more about travelling and I had the opportunity to practice my new found love of backpacking.

During all of 2019 I couldn’t stop thinking about what it would be like to live this ‘van life’ I’ve been hearing so much about.  I saw a few out on the road and I got to talk to some friends who were building out one on their own.  After realizing it was completely within my budget, I placed an order from a brand new Sprinter van in the middle of November 2019.  Finally I got to take my dream and turn it into reality.  Then COVID, which threw all plans into disarray, I got to spend most of the pandemic researching and obsessing over every single available youtube van build videos.   Once Vincent finally arrived from the factory in September of 2020, the keys were in my hands and I got to start building… and who would have thought that turned out to be harder than expected?

I fully expected that if I ordered a van in November of 2019 that I could get my new home built by July of 2021 right?  Seems completely reasonable… But I was wrong.  I nickname the majority of 2021 as “Van Life Year 0” because this is technically when I started living out of Vincent.  My leases’ expiration date was slowly coming to an end and I was nowhere near complete.  This is when the reality of things set it in and I moved into a vehicle with only a bed, battery table.

Here we are to the current year, Van Life Year 1.  On January 1st I wrapped up all the loose ends at home, declared Vincent’s build complete (it wasn’t) and drove to the American Southwest where it was supposedly not going to be too cold.  When I left Wisconsin it was -2°F so really anywhere else is better.

I’m excited to be able to share snippets of this journey with whoever has an interest.



Van Life Year 1

After 15 months of building and nearly twice as long planning I finally hit the road!  Everything about the experience was slightly unexpected and expected as the same time.  Southwest USA, here we come.

Coming Soon

Van Life Year 0

It took an extra six months of building than I originally planned.  This means I was without an apartment and I had to live and build in the same place while life continued to happen around me.

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The Van Build

Even though the process drove me crazy… I am proud to say I built out nearly every aspect of my van myself.  Starting with minimal handiness skills it was a long road.

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Road Trip 2019

It took all the lessons I learned from my 2016 road trip and set out for a 50 day adventure.  With a new found passion for backpacking I got to see and do more than I thought possible.

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Road Trip 2016

After what I am calling my 30s life crisis I put all my belongings into storage and decided to drive west and live out of my car.  WIth no experience hiking or camping I learned a lot about myself along the way.

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