After living in Colorado for 2+ years I came back to Costa Rica with an even bigger sense of adventure. I had experienced a life like no other, living up in the Rockies with camping, biking, rafting and hiking right outside my doorstep. Moving back to Costa Rica was hard, everything was so different – I mean, there’s so much to do & see here but it wasn’t right outside my door. So I started camping in the back of my SUV and it gave me a sense of liberty. I realized how little of my own home country I had seen and this was the best way to do it.
I then transitioned to a pickup truck, funny enough, I had always dreamed of having a white 5 passenger pickup truck, it seemed like the ultimate vehicle – I could drive around with my kids, their friends, and a ton of stuff in the back. So that was my next step – the truck of my dreams. I quickly set it up to sleep in the back of the truck, with a canvas topper and extension, it was great, but I felt really exposed. Even today I can’t believe the places I camped in that thing, anything could have happened! And that’s when I moved onto a rooftop tent, best thing ever. Until… I had to set it up by myself. Every. Single Time!
It was a great setup, seriously, that breeze coming off the ocean, waking up looking out to the rainforest, or even rain, it was a cozy pot on top of my truck where I could hang out, sleep, have coffee. It’s funny this “overlanding” thing, it’s like you just can’t stop – in a couple months time I had a 12v fridge, alternate battery system and eventually, some drawers for my kitchen and my gear. I just couldn’t get enough, with a few negatives:
a) I still felt vulnerable
b) What if someone climbed up the tent ladder?
c) What if it rained for days on end and I couldn’t even cook?
d) What a pain in the ass having to setup that damn thing on my own.
It was then that I had the opportunity to switch to a custom made aluminum camper. It was a prototype but I was excited, I could enter the tent through the truck bed, I had more “indoor” space and I could lock myself in the camper if case of an emergency. But the questions came up again:
a) What if someone broke into the camper while I’m sleeping?
b) What if something happens and I can’t run to the cabin to drive off?
c) What if it rained for days and I can’t cook? (That did happen by the way, I ate a lot of tuna & crackers lol)
d) What if I want to be on the road for over 2 weeks?
So the van was the next obvious option – I mean, I had switched setups a million times in 3 years, why not just switch over to a van?
And that’s pretty much how it happened. I was going through a process in my life where my kids had moved on and it was my time to move on too. I was free enough to be able to move anywhere, live anywhere, the beach, mountains, another country. I couldn’t decide. The beach would be too hot, I know myself, I’d be locked in my room with the AC day in and day out. The mountain, wake up to the cold with my coffee? Yes please? Ah but the loneliness. So the van was the next best option, I could make “home” anywhere – and that’s how it started!