October 4, 2020
Our first flirtations with #VANLIFE were back in 2019 when the San Diego law prohibiting vehicle habitation was first deemed unconstitutional and overturned. We had just picked up a 1990 e150 to use as a surf van which we were building out to double as a weekend adventure vehicle and, with this new turn of legislation, we starting to entertain the idea of seriously simplifying our lives and becoming full-time vanners.
Well, it (unsurprisingly) turns out that wealthy San Diego property owners were more concerned with vans blocking their million-dollar ocean views than they were about upholding the constitution and newly-worded legislation was quickly put into place, criminalizing van living once more.
As vanners in our neighborhood were getting fined, towed and otherwise chased out of town, we made the decision to hold onto our cute, little downtown apartment and our brick and mortar jobs for a bit longer. Then, shortly after wrapping up the school year and tying the knot in July, we moved out of our place, politely asked the van to hold what was left of our stuff and skipped off to Southeast Asia.
Six months later, after falling completely in love with Vietnam, we headed back to the U,S of A with plans to sell the van and make other arrangements for the few belongings we wanted to hang onto before heading back. Our flight landed in San Diego on March 4th, 2020 and I imagine you already have a pretty good idea of what happened next…
As our 90-day visa allowance dwindled down to its final days, we brainstormed the best approach to meeting our obligatory travel requirement...“But what if…”, we thought, “we took advantage of the opportunity to get to know a little more of Vietnam and did the journey by motorbike instead?" Read More
January 20, 2020
After three challenging months living with Arturo’s folks, the van was finally fit for full-time habitation. Fully equipped with a functioning gas gauge, under and above-bed storage, a sink, granite countertops and multiple lighting options, we hit the road without a concrete plan about exactly where we were going or how long we’d be inhabiting the van or even staying in the country.
Three months later, we had made it to nine states, explored five national parks and successfully dodged coronavirus (and Nevada). While on the road, we also made a friend who works in the medical field and introduced us to some groundbreaking research about fat soluble vitamin B1 that has radically transformed Arturo’s health. We’ve put thousands of miles on the van, blown the thermostat twice, seen geysers and bison for the first time, rotated the tires on the side of a forest road (without a jack stand), hiked the north rim of the Grand Canyon, swam in all of the rivers and lakes we could find, shared a fourth of July feast with new friends in the forest, helped some first-time campers pitch a tent in the pouring rain, perfected some of our best van recipes and bought our first can of bear spray (which thankfully, we haven’t needed to use...yet).
Grateful as we are for all of these new experiences and the beautiful people and places we’ve encountered along the way, it got to a point where we had to acknowledge that we were starting to feel a little run down…OK, a LOT run down. Vanning full-time is full of little day-to-day stressors and, paired with the general lack of control over our own lives that we’ve felt since March, it brought us to a bit of a breaking point.
With most of the world’s borders closed, there weren’t a ton of options available to us and reestablishing ourselves in the states didn’t feel like an option at all. It wasn’t until we were about an hour outside of San Diego that an idea struck like a bolt of lightening…MEXICO!
After a few weeks of tying up some ends in SD, we’re here! We’ve already signed a six-month lease for a little rental in Ensenada and we’re ready to ease into our next stage of the van build while enjoying some great waves and great food!
Keep scrolling if you want to see a little video tour of our new pad!
Hi. Our names are Arturo and Alicia and, along with our faithful Ford Econoline, we’re 2kooks1van.
Shortly after our departure, Vietnam shut down its borders and California starting enacting social distancing measures, shutting schools and beaches and literally dragging surfers out of the water and arresting them. Before we knew it, we were in full-blown lockdown with four kids under ten (our niece and nephews) who were trying to navigate online school as we shifted into full-on van build mode while learning to cope with worsening fatigue from Arturo’s multiple sclerosis.
October 16, 2020
We're moving into the next stage of our build! That means staying stationary for a little while. Check out our new pad in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico.