The month of May brought a change of pace! We were lucky enough to have family and friends visit us in the Algarve (southern Portugal) and I even got to meet up with my mom in Ireland for a cousin’s wedding!
As we approached this impending change (airbnbs rather than Beni life), Ash and I wondered how we would feel at the end of the 3 week period. Would we be reticent to return to our humble abode on wheels, or would we readily embrace life on the road again?? Read on to find out…
It was an absolute treat to spend time with loved ones; being far from them is the only real hard part of this journey! And to stay in accommodations with multiple rooms (I used to take this for granted!), take longer (and more frequent) showers, and have yards where our dogs could hang out unsupervised – well those were bonuses as well!
But, I have to say that after almost 2 months straight of living in our Beni this airbnb thing was a bit of a shock to my system. I hadn’t realized how much I had adapted to life on the road and gotten used to our small quarters and daily schedule. So much so that my first thought when walking into our cliffside apartment in Benagil Portugal (well, second thought after thinking “how stunning is this view!), was “where do I put my stuff?” One of the necessities of living in a CC is having a place for everything- my fanny pack goes in a box overhead, dog leashes on the hook closest to the door, sunglasses in the cup holder…and so on and so forth. So upon walking into a room with ample space and several tables, I froze! I felt overwhelmed by the spaciousness! To assuage this newfound anxiety I chose a “special shelf” for all my things to be placed throughout our week at the house; problem solved! 🤣
But over this 3 week period, I also noticed something else which was somewhat surprising to me. Intermittently, a feeling of “restlessness” would creep into my bones. A 3 week vacation is a pretty long time and I could feel myself yearning for….well, structure! 😲 Now, I can hear most of you readers thinking “but hadn’t you already been on vacation for TWO MONTHS?” 🤷🏼 And yes, our Beni adventure is a vacation from our “normal” lives. But, it’s also a lifestyle. And as much as the camping-car lifestyle affords us amazing amounts of freedom and magnificent adventuring, it also requires a good amount of daily “work” or chores to keep things running smoothly (finding places to fill our freshwater tank and empty our 💩 cassette, for example, *file that under things you may or may not have wanted to know!*). Now, these tasks are not difficult and can be downright dirty, but they are absolutely necessary to keep us on the move, thereby providing just the right amount of structure and schedule to keep this gal happy!
So, while I cherish the time we had with our friends and family, I am simply struck, and frankly pleased, by the fact that I actually missed (the often annoying) day to day dealings of camping-car life. In some ways this 3 week break was another litmus test…is #vanlife for me? And the answer to the million-dollar question is….A resounding YES! (at least for now 😉 )