Archive for January, 2009
Posted on January 30, 2009 by angela
As with most major decisions in our relationship, we really don’t make a commitment as much as say, other decisions that force us into it.
Last week, we were discussing whether we should sell our house, or rent it out. We had no idea if we could get a lease signed that would cover our mortgage, taxes and other home expenses. So, I posted an ad on craigslist, figuring we wouldn’t get a response. We did, they came, we have applications.
So, if this trip is a go, we need to decide soon. Either rent the house now, leave March 1, or see if in a few months we can still get someone to sign a lease.
The van in Eureka didn’t pan out. So, this decision has to be made without a running van, a real plan or, so we’ve been told, much common sense. Jason continues to work on the van, but is keeping an eye out for another.
Posted on January 20, 2009 by angela
Last month, we were planning to meet some friends near Big Sur for some hiking and car camping. A great opportunity to test out the van, and see if we even wanted to spend an extended period of time together in the future.
Jason rushed to tune up the van and order tires. As he was about to set off to Oakland to pick up them up, I decided I better follow him. Crossing the Park St bridge out of Alameda a big puff of black smoke came out of the back of the engine and he pulled over. The van is back in our driveway, still without the new tires, but with mystery engine problems and a major transmission leak.
So now I find myself riding with my family, north on 101 to Eureka , in search of our new van.
Posted on January 16, 2009 by angela
Of course, the trip is still in the maybe stage now, but it is becoming more and more a possibility. The idea has been scaled back to Mexico, potentially further south. Jason’s plan is much more extensive than mine.
But I know that Jason has always wanted to spend more time with Bode, and soon he’ll be in school. He wants some time off, and supposing I could get a job in this economy (I’m in marketing, a field most likely to be cut during tough times), I don’t think I could support the family in California. We discussed our other options, move back to Texas near our families, both of us getting a job here in Cali, etc etc. But it kept coming back to doing something we both love, travel and adventure. Why not take advantage of the time we have before Bode is in school, wait for the job market to open more possibilities for both of us….and get the fuck out of here for a while?
So after all my initial hesitation, I am starting to come around to this idea. Jason, on the other hand is having second thoughts. He’s worried about all the things I worried about at the beginning; our retirement, our savings, being homeless and jobless upon our return, health care and getting the van running.
Posted on January 15, 2009 by angela
I first suspected my husband of having a midlife crises last summer. I remember catching up with my girlfriends during a girls’ weekend in Napa, and mentioning this. They laughed it off, remembering Jason from our twenties as one of the most laid back guys they knew. He’s still laid back, but I knew he was itching for adventure and wanting to spend more time with me and our son.
My friends and I returned to our house in Alameda on a Sunday before they all flew home. There, I find that he has taken our son Bode to Santa Cruz, and purchased a ’71 Volkswagen camper van.
I can’t say I was totally surprised, and frankly, I was a little relieved. He could have bought an expensive sports car or taken a mistress. Jason has always been a Volkswagen guy, and has always wanted a van. His dad had one when he was a kid (and still had it when we began dating). Phew, I thought this was the end of it, a little project for him will cheer him up.
A little about the van. He got it for a steal, but I soon found out why. He bought it from two women who had lived in it with their dogs, yes dogs. They’d upgraded to a bigger van, and needed the cash. The van didn’t run, and was towed to our house that week. To say this van was a horrific mess is an understatement. Jason pulled everything out, including the tie-dye curtains and gave the entire inside a power wash. Clumps of dog hair streamed out and flowed down our street.
For a couple months, Jason worked on the van while Bode played in the pop up tent. A little electrical work here, reupholstering some seats there. Bode and I did puzzles on the table inside the van.
But, the restoration wasn’t enough. The van was just the beginning, just a taste of the possibilities. Soon he was talking about traveling around the world. Yes, of course I thought he was crazy at first. But, the more he talked, the more we came up with reasons why now might be the time.