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Tag: minimalism

Journal Preview #1

Journal Preview #1

November 25, 2016

After months of researching and checking craigslist we found a van that we thought we wanted to purchase. We went to the family owned dealership checked it out and gave her a test ride. Our brother in law came with us to help make our decision. The van needed some cosmetic help but seemed like a good find. They were asking $4900 excluding closing fees we ended up negotiating for $4900 tax title and license. She is a 2005 Freightliner Sprinter van. 

Notes: Our bro in law noted that it didn’t have much “pickup” but we just figured that’s how it drove. As it turns out it was in “limp home mode” because the turbo resonator needed replaced. 

We got a tremendous deal. With only 100k miles, you can’t find these vans for less than $10k in good condition. 

Our Van Broke Down

Our Van Broke Down


Our van has died on us a few times during this trip literally in the middle of the highway. It’s not a fun feeling. Just cruising along driving totally fine then it everything turns off and we have to quickly find our way to a safe spot. Luckily each time the van starts right back up and we keep cruisin’. We took it to a mechanic. He couldn’t figure out why that would occur.

Yeah well…didn’t happen this time. Our van died in the middle of a busy ass street in downtown Calgary in the middle of rush hour. No shoulder or anything. We had 18 wheelers missing us by inches for 1 hour while we sat there in the middle of the road with our hazard lights on waiting for the tow truck to arrive.

Luckily AAA works in Canada. The tow truck took us to the nearest mechanic who works on Sprinter vans. After 2 days they still have no idea what’s causing it to simply die for no reason. It isn’t misfiring, the battery and alternator are good…SIGH..

The definite silver lining in all of this is we happened to be stranded in a city where we have a dear close friend who has done WAY TOO MUCH to help us. We are so so so so so lucky to have someone that generous & courteous to “shack us up” for the night(s).

Anyways…outside of the vulnerable feeling that our van has a mysterious issue that eludes all mechanics, Calgary has been AMAZING.

We are here at the perfect time. Perfect weather, the largest rodeo in North America is happening, The Stampede. We biked 25 miles all around the city yesterday. It’s been very enjoyable.

We’ll see what happens next…

Today is officially 5 Weeks in the Van

Today is officially 5 Weeks in the Van

We are currently sitting at the McDonald’s in Hamilton, Montana utilizing their free Wi-Fi. We also splurged on a Sausage Biscuit sandwich & hash brown :).

We are still traveling a little too fast but we’ve kind of accepted the fact that we like see as much as possible as quickly as possible. Each day is very long.

Each day typically looks like this…

Wake up slowly around 8a.

Brush our teeth & wash our face. We can usually use a stream nearby our campground.

Eat breakfast which is usually 2 or 3 bites each of Yogurt or oatmeal.

Travel to our destination to either Hike, Bike, Kayak or generally explore an area.

Eat lunch which is usually a smoothie that always has bananas, protein powder, fruit, almond milk.

Explore some more

Travel to a campground. It typically takes us 30 minutes to an hour to arrive at our campsite.

Eat dinner around 6p. Always different. Sandwiches, Soups, Wraps, Sausages & Veggies, Pasta etc.

Recap our day and plan the next day.

Get on our phones, laptops IF we have service. About 30% of the time.

Go to bed around 10p.