Adjusting to a New Normal – The End of Van Life?

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Is the ongoing pandemic marking the end of van life as we know it? Here’s how we’ve adapted through months of uncertainty.

I think it’s safe to say that when I wrote our Pandemic Van Life blog back in April, we still had a glimmer of hope that we would all be able to wash our hands of this in a few months and resume a somewhat normal, albeit modified, way of life. Now, almost four months later, it’s clear that the world will never be the same and it’s going to take a very long time for people to feel comfortable travelling freely again.

Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Pierogi at the Beach
A picture of Pierogi at the beach to break up the seriousness

So much has transpired this year that has made us extremely grateful for our health, our safety, and all of the adventures we were able to go on in the past few years. As much as we would love to be cruising up to the Arctic this summer like we had originally planned, we realize that these smaller communities cannot handle any tourists because they barely have the resources to supply their own residents. Towns like Whistler and Squamish begged Vancouverites to stay away and not add any additional stress to their already scarcely stocked shelves – especially when toilet paper was the new gold for a while there (why did that happen anyway..?). Without turning this into a rant, my point here is that now is not the time to be selfish. Yeah, it sucks that the travel plans that you’ve been working on for the past six months got spoiled but if that’s all you’ve got to complain about then you’re doing pretty damn good.

That being said, we’ve been getting messages here and there wondering how we’re doing and if we’re still living in the van so we wanted to give a little update on where we’re at in the midst of all this craziness. In our last blog, we were renting an Airbnb on Vancouver Island with hopes that it would only be a temporary situation. After a month there, we realized that this isn’t going to be over anytime soon so we started looking at more long-term options. We knew that the only way we could get through this would be if we were close to nature so we found a great little spot in Nanaimo that’s close to the ocean and a ton of hiking trails. We were hesitant to sign our lives away on a year-long lease but we knew we had to prioritize the ability to work and use the bathroom, as these were basic things that we realized we took for granted once they were no longer available to us.

Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Houseplants
A new hobby now that we’re stationary – houseplants!

So there you have it, the end of full-time van life has come upon us. We have become involuntary weekend warriors after an absolutely amazing 2+ years. That’s not to say that we still won’t be travelling and going on road trips (still so many places we want to see!) but we will have a shower to come home to now, which is a weird but welcomed adjustment. We are so fortunate that we can afford to live in an apartment and still keep the van and we truly feel for those who live in their vehicle out of necessity and not leisure – this can’t be easy. So with that, I’ll leave you with some photos of some mini-adventures we’ve been able to go on while adjusting to this new normal. ✌️

Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Departure Bay
View from Sugarloaf Mountain
Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Mary Bonnet Park
Nice little wooded trail across the street from our house
Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Nanoose Bay
Lovely view of Nanoose Bay
Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Pierogi on Notch Hill
Pierogi trailblazing on the Notch Hill Loop
Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Pipers Lagoon
Piper’s Lagoon Park
Generic Van Life - End of Van Life - Pierogi on Sugarloaf Mountain
Pierogi, the queen of Departure Bay
  1. You’ve been in my thoughts & prayers all these months. So happy your safe & healthy ❣ Thank you for the update & beautiful photos. Biggg huggzz as always, love you guys bunch. xo

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