It's New Years Day, 2016, Hell's Kitchen NYC. The jumbotron insanity of Times Square is four blocks up 47th street, but it's far away from the warmth of this messy loaned apartment with Mandolin Orange on the sound system and the soft tap of James's typewriter app.
On the subway to a house party in Brooklyn, I set my annual New Years intention: to be awake and present for all the breathtaking, revelatory, challenging, uncomfortable and simple moments to come. Then James and I made a fairly open-ended 2016 bucket list that started with "convert a school bus to a tiny home" and included the starting points for a bunch of grand adventures and a life that throws mud at the 50's American Dream. I'm sure 2016 will be a lot of things I'm not expecting, but I can't imagine it will be dull.
One person with a crazy idea is a dreamer, two people with a crazy idea are a force to be reckoned with.
Soooo, progress: as of yesterday, we now own a kitchen sink... in Raleigh NC (THANKS Ingrid!) and a tiny wood stove which will arrive sometime in February, so I guess this is really happening. But really, the adventure's been inevitable since some evening in October, both of us leaning on the counter by the kitchen sink, when I paused between van-dwelling jokes and said "but really, if you're serious, I'm in". He was, so we sealed the pact with a hug and kicked into real-deal research mode the next day.
We did a lot of debating of the pros and cons of Westfalias vs. Sprinters/vans vs. busses vs. airstreams vs. truck bed campers and there's no one clear answer. But, we like the tiny-home functionality, durability and rough road capability of full-chassis short busses. Everyone has their two cents but we decided to find and convert a 5-6 window "half bus", diesel, with a reputable engine, no structural rust and decent tires. Wish list items include great tires, minimal surface rust, service records, "low" miles, and a good "face" (we like square noses & horizontal grilles). This isn't the easiest set of specs to locate so the hunt is on...
I think everyone has a go-to treat or cheat that they justify "because I'm traveling". For a lot of people that's fries, a fancy Starbucks drink or king size Reece's peanut butter cups. My travel splurge might be healthier but it's a lot more fiscally irresponsible. I always end up buying the green juices that most people look at and go "WTF?! How is juice $12?!". If it's a raw juice & mostly veggie, I generally don't check the price. I tell myself this is an attempt to stave off the inevitable crumminess of not sleeping, not having a lot of healthy food options and being in close proximity to loads of people in climate controlled environments. Probably, it's just because travel is an excellent excuse to enjoy something I shouldn't buy all the time.
Sooooooo.... If you want to drink really good green juice at New York City prices, I recommend stopping by Juice Press to get an OMMM! juice. While you're there, you can pick up their crazy-huge juice menu for inspiration and tell yourself that you'll make (not buy) some creative combinations when you get home.