When I first started writing about my idea of living on the go after my current responsibilities end, I got many emails, comments, and messages suggesting a Winnebago, fifth wheel, or any of a variety of houses on wheels. Not so coincidentally, I’ve been noticing a plethora of such vehicles hogging the road, and frankly, I have absolutely no interest in that means of travel. (Though I do appreciate the interest in my plans.)
I know people love the convenience of taking their home with them, but such vehicles have always appalled me. They seem like civilization at its worst, the ultimate in conspicuous consumption and arrogance, dabbling in nature while not giving up comfort or technology. The only thing more appalling to me is the RV culture that has grown up around such a lifestyle, and I want no part of it.
The whole point of my journey is to travel light, being free to go where whim and circumstances carry me. To find home inside me or perhaps in the journey itself, to feel at home wherever I might be, whether it is a small town, a big city, the open road, or beside a mountain stream. There is no place in this vision — this vision quest — for a lumbering vehicle with a high environmental impact.
Besides that, a home on wheels screams loudly and clearly, “I am not of you. I am just passing through.” And for however long I stay in one place, I want to be of that place, a part of it in any way I can, to experience it not as a tourist, but in some more intimate way. It’s possible I’m just fooling myself, but still, this journey is supposed to be on my own terms, and my terms are that less is best. I’ve never really owned much, not even real furniture since I prefer empty rooms, and I sure don’t want to start owning things now.
To begin with, I will have enough of my past that I can’t get rid of — things that I made or were made for me, household goods my life mate/soul mate and I shared, belongings that remind me of who we were — and so I’ll need to rent a storage unit. Someday maybe even these few possessions can be disposed of, and then I really will be light and free.
Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.” All Bertram’s books are published by Second Wind Publishing. Connect with Pat on Google+