Vanlife has been a dream for a lot of people, us included ! But today, it’s more than just a dream, it has become our life. From expectation to reality, we want to tell you the truth about vanlife!
Common idea n°1: we always wake up in a wonderful place
Instagram, Pinterest or just on the internet, you can see pictures everywhere of people waking up with a view. You can see the van, a sexy chick and a beach at the sun rise, a dream life to make it simple. Yes we often sleep in really cool places, sometimes even in wonderful places when we are lucky.
But no, we’re not always that lucky. We sometime have to sleep on car parks, because we arrived quite late in an area or just because we didn’t find any better place. We sometimes sleep between cars or with a lot of motorhomes, in town centers and with a lot of trafic. These are not our favourite waking up, and we usually leave quite early to go to a better place. But we do our best to find cool spots, peaceful and with a nice view if possible ! But it can’t ALWAYS be perfect !
Common idea n°2: it’ s always sunny and we spend our all day outside
You think that we are outside all the time doing some yoga and reading books? We’d like to! When the weather is fine, that’s what we do, and these are the best days. But unfortunately the sun takes a break sometime, and we have to manage with rain.
4m2 for a couple with a (big) dog and a cat it’s a little adventure ! So we just chill, we read, we watch a movie, we write an article, we kill time basically! It’s more difficult when we can’t go outside to do the dishes or to take a good shower. And we have to keep our four legged friends inside. But we get used to it, Lewis can play under the rain, he’ll just come back all wet. That’s the way it goes, and we live with it !
Common idea n°3: we always keep the van clean
We are proud of our tiny home. We built it entirely, making a little home on wheel from an empty box. It’s beautiful and cosy, impartially. But it’s really small, we don’t have much room, especially with four of us. Everything must be in its place (or almost). We have to fold the bed if we want to use the table. We need to tidy the van every day.
And we also have to clean the van, everytime. With a dog and a cat, you can guess that we’re not really strict with cleaning, especially in a 4m2 home. But we sweep everyday, even two or three times a day to keep it livable. Folding the blanket every morning, doing the dishes after every meal… Theses are some unavoidable duty. There is some cleaning and tidying before every inside picture of a nice and cosy campervan.
Common idea n°4: « But you have a shower and toilets inside your van, haven’t you? »
Toilets and showering… we’ve been asked a lot about these two, and it’s quite funny! We don’t know how people imagine it, but the adage says « keep it simple ». The toilets, mother nature provides it almost everywhere. We never leave the paper behind us, the rest is completely natural and biodegradable. It doesn’t bother us, we’re used to it, and there is nothing dirty about it. It’s even less dirty than the majority of the public toilets.
Concerning the shower, it takes place outside. Our van is way too small to have a shower inside, we can’t even stand up in there. So we open the two back doors, we put a curtain, a duckboard on the floor, we heat some water, plug the 12V shower and let’s go. It’s really convenient and it wash as well as a « classic » shower don’t worry, that’s water and soap after all. When the weather is really bad outside, we just wait a little until it gets more clement, or sometimes we use some baby-wipe. We stay clean every day (or almost) !
Of course, everything has to be taken with irony. We love the vanlife, and we wouldn’t change it for anything. We are free, and that’s the most important after all. There isn’t any perfect way of life, there will always be some inconvenience. You just have to know what are you priorities. Vanlife is amazing, don’t hesitate and rush in (and get your broom ready)!