Table of contents
- Who are you?
- What are you doing?
- What kind of RV is this?
- Why are you doing this?
- Did you really quit your full-time jobs?
- What will you do for money?
- Where are you going?
- Is it safe?
- Are you guys just LOVING it?
- What about your son's education?
- What kind of RV is this?
- How much does it cost?
- How long will you do this?
- After you get that out of your system, then will you return to your senses?
- Will you live in an RV forever?
- What are you running away from?
Who are you?
What are you doing?
What kind of RV is this?
Our RV is comprised of a Bliss Mobil 15′ Standard habitat and a surplus U.S. Military cargo truck (LMTV M1078A1R).
Why are you doing this?
I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in early 2015 and endured six months of chemo and six weeks of radiation. During this stressful time, Lily and I watched adventure travel videos and dreamed of a better future beyond the chemo infusion room. We stumbled upon Bliss Mobil videos and website and fell in love.
Upon receiving the first clean PET scan, we decided to use the cancer as a catalyst to re-prioritize what was important. We’ve always loved to travel, both within the U.S. and internationally. We also love the outdoors and off-grid camping, previously from our Tacoma truck. We chose to combine our loves and pursued building an adventure camper based on the Bliss Mobil habitat.
In the beginning we weren’t sure where this would lead us but as the LMTV / Bliss Mobil combo neared completion it became clearer that we wanted to quit our full-time jobs, get rid of most of our belongings, sell the house and live in the RV for a while. The main goal being to break us out of the “rat race” rut.
Did you really quit your full-time jobs?
Darrell’s biggest fear is dying at his desk in an office cubicle. He’s been working in an office building, for someone else, long enough. He’s paid his dues and is now ready for a big change. Lily used to substitute teach and worked as an English teacher at a community college, but her job now as a writer allows her to seamlessly live the lifestyle of a digital nomad.
What will you do for money?
We both work part-time as digital nomads. Lily writing and Darrell in DevOps (tech infrastructure).
Where are you going?
It’s funny to think back that when we started we had a big vision to drive our truck from Alaska to Argentina. What we found after a couple of months in the RV is that we are very SLOW travelers and not destination focused. If we love a place, we’ll stay a week or more.
We rarely have a travel “plan” and usually don’t know our next destination until the day of departure. In fact, as I write this, on a Saturday, I have no idea where we’ll be Monday. Will it be more Baja? Or the ferry to the mainland? Who knows…
At first, this style of travel was stressful. Not having a plan or knowing where we’d be in a day or two caused anxiety. But we’ve since settled in to it. What helps is that even with having no idea of our next stop, everything has always just “worked out”.
Since mid-April 2018 we’ve traveled most states west of Colorado. In late January we entered Baja California, Mexico. As of this post (mid-March 2019) we are hoping to catch the ferry to the Mexico mainland.
Is it safe?
Our experience so far traveling the U.S and Baja, Mexico have been super positive. We follow common sense precautions and heightened awareness but find the overwhelming majority of people in the world are like us: friendly, curious, proud of their homes and just trying to get through the day.
Are you guys just LOVING it?
It took a while…there are times when it’s total bliss. And times when it’s not. Speaking for myself, in the U.S., my happiest times were when we could boondock in complete isolation. As we’ve entered Mexico, the relaxed vibe and warm, friendly people have made almost every destination enjoyable, whether isolated or not. In fact, in Mexico we’ve spent more time in areas with others nearby than not. In fact, some of our favorite experiences in Mexico have been camping near like-minded folks and making new friends. Not that we didn’t do some of this in the U.S. but it’s been easier here. Maybe because with each day this “RV life” gets a tiny bit easier and more comfortable.
What about your son’s education?
“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” – Mark Twain
We roadschool / homeschool our son. Darrell focuses on Science, Maths and Tech. Lily on Writing, Language Arts and Social Studies. The world provides everything else.
What kind of RV is this?
We wanted a more rugged RV than the standard model we see in our neighbor’s driveway. So we settled on a really comfortable camper box mounted to a surplus U.S. Army truck. Since we’re living in this thing we decided we needed to take more stuff and added a modified surplus U.S. Army trailer.
The main goal is to be able to go off-grid, over rough roads, without the thing rattling apart. This vehicle is designed to survive punishing terrain.
How much does it cost?
The LMTV and trailer are military surplus and surprisingly affordable (see the resources page). The BlissMobil box is the most expensive component but that’s where we’ll be living.
This is the way we look at it: We are selling off almost all of our belongings and living in this RV. We want something comfortable. It’s cheaper than, or about the same as, the cost of a small home way outside of the hyper-expensive Bay Area. You can PM Darrell if you are really curious.
How long will you do this?
For as long as we can stand it. One year. Two. Forever? Until we decide, as a family, to do something different.
After you get that out of your system, then will you return to your senses?
If you mean the Traditional Way of Life – office job, focus on “career”, two cars and house or condo I can’t really afford – then no. Been there, done that. Have you seen The Matrix? 🙂
Will you live in an RV forever?
Not likely. We’re not setting any expectations for the future other than to not return to what we were doing.
What are you running away from?
We saved our favorite question for last!
We’re running toward an exciting, adventurous life, full of experiences–good, bad, frustrating, exhilarating and satisfying. Life is short. Live it however you want, but live it!
If you have any questions not answered here please contact us or leave a question in the comments!