Wednesday, April 28, 2010


In anticipation of my arrival next weekend Pod boy has taken out the long cupboard that ran down the length of the driver's side of the van. This will give us extra sleeping space, but does leave us with absolutely NO storage space built into the van. Basically we are back to the original van shell with a shelf across the back window. At the moment Pod boy has all of his clothes in containers on top of this shelf.

This picture gives you an idea of the inside of the pod right now, Pod boy has taken other (better) pictures of what the pod looked like half an hour ago and he will have pictures of it when he's finished with it today. He's not doing much, just getting it so it's comfortable for us during my 5 days there. Then the real work will begin, I think. It's hard to know exactly when the rebuild will happen.

It's also hard getting posts and pictures on here at the moment. I'm still on weird shifts and Pod boy's internet has slowed (he's capped it!!) and he has two days before it speeds up. Then hopefully we can get some of the photos he's been taking up on here.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


I grew up in a completely different environment to Pod boy. I am the eldest of four girls (he is the youngest, with one sister and two brothers). For most of my life I had responsibility drummed into my head, as the oldest I was also the one responsible for seeing that dinner was ready when my Mum got home from work and that all the odd jobs had been done too. I feel like I had a lot of responsibility from a very young age not just at home but also at school and in the community.

Me, second from the left, and my sisters

I was 9 when Mum went back to full time work - Dad worked from home but his office was about 300m away from the house so he wasn't really right there. I got my first job as a checkout chick when I was 14 and I began babysitting for neighbours and tutoring various neighbourhood children when I was 16. I was overly involved at school: I was on almost every committee, I was heavily involved in drama, music, debating, sport and I was editor of the school newspaper for 3 years. I also had various leadership roles in the school and tutored 3 students in English and Maths.

I went straight from high school to University and in my first year began to feel discontented with my life. I took a year off after my first Uni year to nanny for two little girls whose mother had died. I worked about 60-80 hours/week with them as their dad worked very long hours and I was basically live-in. It's no surprise, looking at this list (and remembering the other things I was also doing at the time), to me that when I turned 20 I totally rebelled against responsibility. I went back to Uni, but I was totally disinterested. I didn't have the drive to succeed like I always had, I wanted to have a life of simplicity.

From about 20-23 I dropped a lot of unnecessary stuff, I took more time for myself and I began saying "no" to some things that people asked of me. I was a lot more relaxed and tried to only do stuff that I wanted to do. I only did the bare minimum to pass my courses, and even though I was still getting great marks I wasn't actively trying for these. I had a couple of serious relationships, but there was always a part of myself that I held back. I was scared to let anyone too close to me, I was much happier being there for other people and not relying on anyone else.

When I was 23 I started my nursing course, I went into it excited and motivated (but unwilling to study endlessly or put more effort in than I needed to to pass). I'm lucky that I'm naturally bright, I can write assignments in hours that other people take weeks to write and I've used this skill endlessly during my course. I know this sounds scary, and you might be thinking "wow, I don't want someone that doesn't try to be nursing me" but don't worry, I'm good at what I do when I'm doing it, I just don't want it to be the focus of my life.

When Pod boy first talked about me living in the van full-time with him I was a little apprehensive. It was totally different than holidaying in the van with no other responsibilities. But then it hit me, vandwelling was the perfect situation for me right now. It feels right to be mobile, to be closer to the earth and more subject to nature. It feels right to walk away from the constrains of my childhood, it feels wonderfully appropriate that I'm back at Mum and Dad's so I'm going from my parents house to the pod: almost like I've come full circle. I feel like I'm only now beginning to live a life of simplicity.

Pod boy and I have an amazing romance, our story is actually pretty unbelievable, and for us vandwelling is both a completion and a beginning. Living together in the pod completes the work we have to do on ourselves and frees us up to focus on a new beginning. He and I might write a blog together when I'm over there and explore our relationship. It's so cathartic to write on here for me, I feel like I learn more and more stuff about myself.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

some of me

hay hay my crickle is gone from me i have no cricke lol
her internet is down :(
very very sad face

but life



any way i thought i would come on and rap about me and how i became me

one of my early memories is of me looking with longing at the local mountains and thinking that i could live there lol would there be bears and things lol i was about 5 lol

then when i was about 13 i realised that we (people) were in bondage (and not the fun kind, he he) financial bondage to our selves.

ive always loved the out doors. as a kid my dad would take me camping lol he often left me there for a week or so on my own lol (ive always been a loner) i loved it. as i got older i hated the idea of rent and mortgages are a real scam and work was for suckers i lived on government benefits for a long time and i lived a very green lifstyle, i always looked for the Cheapest possible rent lol (rat bait is good to have under ur bed lolol).

after a few years of drug and alcohol abuse i realised that my life was going no where and i thought "what do i really want out of live " and i realised that i wanted to travel, so off i went to get a job.

funny thing tho the more money i had the more i spent lol

i forgot about my traval ideas (the rat race had me, dam not enough bait )
so i studied to get a better job and more money to pay for the things i thought i needed i was in my early 20s.

when i was in my mid 20s i got married to a woman that was the complete opposite to me in almost every way and i forgot about my self and i became a step father (she's the child of my spirit if not of my blood) but thats a whole other blog lol.

after 7 years of soul destroying arguments and thoughts of suicide, at 1030 one night i got up and left. i packed a bag of clothes that i needed and walked out (some times the guilt gets to me about that, but i know it was the right thing to do.) so there i am sleeping in my van (fuck) i gota get a place to live (what am i going to do)

bla bla, i worked that week and slept in my van cooked on the job and wow it was ok.

i had never heard of van dwelling or even that other pepople were doing what i was doing, not until i traved north for xmas.

i drove 3,600 km in 3 and a half days, i wanted to see my nephews and brother for x mas day.
it was a real eye opener to meet people who lived in their vans and busses and trucks full time lolololol i thought i was the only one. lolol

Friday, April 23, 2010

Pod boy cooked for me today!

Lamb pseudo souvlaki (no fuss as Pod boy calls it)

Firstly, set up kitchen on the side of the tradesman trailer. Take your favourite knife, show fiance 4,000 km away.

Pour oil into frying pan and gently heat:

Chop garlic and add to oil with chilli flakes, salt, pepper, rosemary and tabasco sauce

Slice lamb very thinly, take garlic pieces out of oil and add meat to pan:

Wash lettuce:

Add a dash of lemon juice to meat when nearly cooked. Take Turkish bread and lay in frying pan:

When meat is finished and bread is ready, put lettuce on top of bread and smother with tomato sauce:

Show cooked meat to fiance:

Tip meat over lettuce and bread:

Roll bread up and enjoy!

Crickle's recommendations: Mix yoghurt, cucumber, mint and a dash of lemon juice together and add over lettuce. Add chopped fresh tomatoes. Garlic hummus over the bread before the lettuce would also be delicious! (Of course this all requires a little foresight ;-) lol)

Learning to live without a bathroom

Pod boy drove from Melbourne up to Townsville just before Christmas last year to spend Christmas with his nephews and meet me in Cairns on New Years Day. I flew from Christchurch to Auckland and then over to Cairns. I wish we had kept a travel diary when we did that trip. It was a turning point in our attitude to vandwelling and we found many beautiful places along the way and I wish we remembered exactly where they were. We're planning on doing a similar trip at the end of this year, and we will definitely be keeping a diary (most probably on here!).

All in all our trip, for me, was 10,421km and we visited at least 24 destinations.

I arrived at 0800 local time to a message left on my cell phone saying that Pod boy was very sorry but he would be late to the airport as a tree had fallen across the road and he was waiting for someone to come and remove it. I'll let Pod boy add the details of that wee incident, it was rather funny. So as I had time I had a shower at the airport, little did I know that would be the last shower in a bathroom for a very long time!

The first few days that Pod boy and I were together we spent a lot of time exploring the area that he had grown up in. The first place he took me to was this beautiful water hole, it was one of the most romantic moments of my life when Pod boy washed my hair here. I had had strict instructions to only bring natural soaps and hair products, obviously he knew we would be "roughing it". But truly, there is something so freeing about finding secluded spots to swim naked and wash. It puts you totally in harmony with nature and makes you so grateful for everything that we have on this earth.

This is another water hole we found, Pod boy had me rather scared here because he kept thinking he had seen a crocodile. We actually spent the night here too, it was lovely - it was also where I was bitten for the first of over 400 itchy bites.

We found out that there was a good swimming creek near where we were staying so we drove out to find it, on the way we found this sign:

We actually never found that particular creek (if I remember correctly we found a secluded forest and had a bucket wash!) I like a big bucket of water or two thrown over me, especially after a hot and sweaty workout.

I'm also uploading this photo of Coffs Harbour because I fell in love with the beach and the town here. We went for a moonlit walk with Pod dog on this beach before falling asleep listening to the waves. Coffs Harbour was special for so many reasons, it was where we had our first big argument (although Pod boy says that he doesn't think we actually ever have BIG arguments - I think that's because he's had some BIG BIG arguments in his life so our basis of comparison is off) and it was the first place where we had an actual shower rather than a wash in a natural water source.

There is one other place where we had a memorable wash, I just cannot for the life of me remember exactly where it was. We stopped for the night in this little seaside town and searched for the beach showers we were sure would be there...there weren't any. But we went for a walk up to some waterfalls we had heard were there with our togs and towels and then got changed and climbed over the railing and then up the rocks and boulders to sit underneath the waterfall. We have no pictures because we didn't want to have to worry about the camera. The interesting thing was that while we were under the waterfall another couple came and also climbed up to get under the waterfall.

The rest of the way south we found various showers: on the beach and in rest areas. When we got to Melbourne we found the shower area that Pod boy still uses most days. It's right by the beach and has unlimited hot water.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

good smells, bad smells

hey hey, omg work work and more work hence no blogging, thanks for all the encouragement from the comments, its really nice to feel like there's a community of like minded people. ive been reading other blogs and you tubing van dwelling and ... how do i say this ... are people really pooping in their vans???? cos thats a real no no in the pod, IT SMELLS and its not a good smell babys are a good smell and deep fried stuff lol but not deep fried babies lol.

i always park near a public toilet... (we don't always park right near one, usually within a ten minute walk: although Pod boy does like it better when we're close because he always walks with me to the loo in the middle of the night, and if we're super close it's better for the sleepy stumbling!)

ok now showers...

when i first started living in the pod i was soo lame i got a gym membership and showered there but sometimes it was shut and i couldnt have a shower and fuck if i dont go to bed clean i cant sleep, u see when i lived in a house i showered 3 or 4 times a day, when i got up, when i came home from work and just before i went to bed and if i got "dirty " at night ;)-
so it was a real adjustment to go to one a day..
it took me some time to find free showers and it wasnt untill i went north over Xmas that i really undersood about pod life, but thats for another blog. (I promise I will do a couple of blogs about that trip, Pod boy's right it was the beginning of us both understanding what vandwelling is all about)
now back to public showers and toilets the only problem with them is they're public and at night they can be a little creepy, so if ur going to go and u see some one here be prepared to get "Mr chow " on their asses and if u dont know what that means check out this link (baby doll insert link here - done darling) lol its a safe bet their just as freaked to see u there at 3 am as u are to see them but a little paranoia can be a good thing. BUT always follow the simple rules of public toilet usage
1 look a little disturbed (most people wont fuck with u if u look like uve got more problems than thay do)
2 never take ur wallet (i also leave my keys with the cock dog opps pod dog, and let me tell u no one will put a fuck on him )
3 be Quick dont stop to look at the graffiti or admire the moon (and if u see 2 moons run). I actually tend to stop and admire the writing on the wall, it's always good to know I have options should the pod cause us three peas to boil over: Bob who likes girls can expect a call from me!
4 only go if u really need to (usually I lay awake for a while looking at the sky trying to work out whether I truly need to wake Pod boy or not...then when I do wake him it's urgent and I get in trouble for not waking him sooner - he's a scary person to wake up!)
5 pick ur parks, some public toilets will be known beats (a slang term in the gay community - a place for gay men to go and have anonymous sex and also to get beaten up by red necks.) not a good place to be at 3 in the morning. I have yet to see any of these places, I tend to believe they don't really exist - but I like having a naive view of the world!

o yer man im tired...

sometimes i wash with buckets lol cold water and lots of it. after about the 10th buket over my head i feel clen enough to sleep lol It cracks me up when Pod boy tells me he's had a "bucket wash", normally it's at the end of a long hot day at work and he just can't face getting in the van all covered in dust. He then usually drives to the showers to have yet ANOTHER one! I must say, however, that I too enjoy a good bucket of water over my head: I'll write about this a bit more in a later blog.

any way crick's asleep i can hear her snoring on the other end of skype (man i love her), she will edit this tomorrow and probably write one herself shes been at placement all week.

ok see yas and remember good smells are what every one wants.
love and freedom to all and a happy whatever u can get.

Pod boy was freaked out the other night when I eventually got home from work, he had been reading something and the person had suggested using plastic bags and kitty litter as a legitimate toilet...that's more what he was meaning about having the toilet in the van. We're thinking of getting a much bigger pod and we will definitely have a self contained toilet in it, no kitty litter EVER though!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Pod boy ventured into the world of blogging, which I think is awesome...I don't know why he thought I'd be cross. I love his style of writing, to begin with we communicated a lot through typing and there are times when I miss his eclectic style of key bashing.

I'm on afternoon shifts at the moment, 10 hour shifts finishing at 2300, so I'm not highly motivated to update all the time. However, Pod boy bought a camera! So now I do have a couple of photos that he has emailed me.

Pod dog (in the front of a very messy pod *glares at Pod boy*)

The pod and trailer

In very exciting news: I organised to have a week off in May so Pod boy has paid for flights over to see him! That means that May could see an influx of photos on the blog, unless I convince Pod boy to take a whole heap for me this week. I don't know what will happen now with the van conversion, whether we'll do it while I'm there (I definitely have plans to make some photo boards, or a special calender design I have in mind) or whether Pod boy might surprise me with it finished when I get there! That would be pretty epic, if he does that I hope he remembers to take photos as he goes!

Tomorrow I'm thinking of detailing some of our trip along the East coast. I'll wrack my brain to remember where we found good showers and toilets. Plus I have some photos from that trip so it can have less words which is good for my poor shift work addled brain!

Monday, April 19, 2010

just a word from the pod

lol im gonna be in sooo much trouble when the crickle gets home from work lol

first of all hi im podboy aka cockboy aka gypsy carpenter
im not an engish major, so cricke will hopefully edit this when she gets home lol or may just delete it lolololol, so if ur lucky enough to read it in the raw then im sooo sorry lol, i was told that im to send all blogs to crickle first to be edited and censored. lolol
so any way i just wanted to come on and say hi and maybe rant a little (the reason for the censorship) OK im a STEALTH vandweller and that means no one knows im here or there, depending on ur perspective of course. there seems to be a lot of paranoia in the van dwelling community and a lot buck (add F for over 18s) the system, i dont need to buck it i just want to not be subject to it lol so i try to be invisible. that means no litter no tents no undies hanging out to dry (yes ive seen it and it aint pretty, the reason im a freeballer) so the other day i see this guy in a winna bago undies out and would u believe it hes jimmied open a power box and has hooked up his deep cycle batteries... (dude not cool) this by the way is at one of my fav spots to sleep (its by the beach and has city views) i know the power box is there but its locked and i dont have a key and breaking and entering is not my style , i try real hard to not break the law cos i dont want the the man breathin down my neck or banging on my door at 4 in the morning (only happend twice in all the time ive been the secret squirrel).

ok back to the rant (as if i ever stopped)
this dudes all sore thumbs and dogs balls every one that walks past can see hes out of place and its only a matter of time till the fuzz show up. BUT hes got deep cycle batteries and they're a complete mystery to me so i stroll over for a chat and a how u going mate.
fyck this guy is real nice lol well defensive at first but the master charmer works his magic and the dudes talking and wont stop lol (tits (mmmm) a loony opps lonely life on the road i guess)
but unfortunately he knows dick about the batteries except that u plug em into a power point when ever u can ( evan if u gota look like a tool doing it????). i guess im lucky ive got a job with free power during the day and if im working for the right builder at night too.

well it turns out that the council has already tried to bust up his little caravan park and apparently hes told them to shove off (some jargon about being self containd and "ill do what ever i want and u can fine me and ill fight it ya ya bla bla") so they give him warning and leave .... this was be4 he jimmied the power box lol

so im going to give that particular sleeping spot a week or so to see what happens lolol i dont want to get caucht up in a raid lololol

so any way i hope its ok that ive crashed crickes blog let me know if i should keep hakkin the account and doing gorrilla blogs while shes at work lolol

love and mung beens to all :)

addit: I haven't changed the style of Pod boy's writing, I have edited the spelling just to make it easier to read! His dyslexic spelling is sometimes difficult!

"Throw it out"

I think I've been driving Pod boy crazy with my questions about what I will need to bring with me in the way of clothing when I move into the van. The "big" worries for me at the moment have been: how many warm clothes to bring with me, how many "nice" clothes to bring, how much storage space I'll be allowed in the van (because I know I will fill whatever big or little space I have) and lastly how much extra stuff to bring and leave in storage. The only really concrete thing he's said is "take a zero off the end of the number of shoes you're bringing", he knows that my parents don't call me Imelda Marcos for no reason!

Another problem for me is that I will be hanging out with Pod boy on jobsites as his apprentice for the 6 months between August and February, obviously during this time I can continue with my habit of only wearing clothes as covers. But come February I will be starting a job as a registered psychiatric nurse where I will be wearing mufti everyday and will actually have to care about the clothes I wear. This means I have to have a range of clothes suitable for both winter/summer as well as casual clothes for hanging around in, work clothes for the hospital and work clothes for mucky jobsites.

We had a discussion a couple of nights ago about our plans for the foreseeable future. It was an important conversation as it revolved around the issue of "stuff" and what we would do with it. Pod boy has a storage unit at the moment that costs about $1200/annum, the money's not an issue but the thought of all the stuff that's in there is daunting for him. Aside from some special books he says there's not really much of importance in it and he's considering getting rid of it. I suddenly felt panicked and while I voiced a few of my concerns I probably didn't explain my fear fully. He'll get to read this when you do and he'll get more insight into my craziness.

As you know Pod boy has been living in the pod for 10 months, while I am living with my parents in a very large house. After we got engaged and decided that I would move over to join him I came home and got rid of a lot of stuff. I thought I had decluttered quite fully; and indeed I had - to a point. I recycled 40kg of paper, mostly old assignments from Uni, I sorted through about 400 books and halved the number that I "couldn't part with". I also sorted through 3 wardrobes of clothes and gave 3 big black bags full away.

My fear over the possibility of giving up the storage unit comes largely from the fear of giving up the security of the stuff it would hold of mine. My parents had said initially that I could leave my furniture and anything that I wasn't immediately wanting at their house. Later I realised that my 3 younger sisters would almost certainly sort through anything I left and help themselves to it. The objective part of me knows that if I'm coping without it then I really don't need it, but the older sister part of me doesn't want them going through anything!

I'm also aware that most of the stuff I have kept will be useful and important when we settle down in a house. So I feel torn: do I just bring the important stuff with me when I move? Do I bring only stuff that will fit in the pod and nothing else, leaving the rest of my beloved things to the wolves? Or do I send everything over (including some furniture) and wrangle a way to keep the storage unit?

I find it interesting that these concerns of mine all melt away when I'm in the pod, it's only here at home that these issues and decisions seem so important. I've realised that this is because the insignificant worries about clothes, hair straighteners and material possessions are easier to deal with than the other issues that are going on at home at the moment. I'm not sure what we'll decide about storage space and my stuff, but I'm sure that when I'm once again living peacefully in the pod I won't even care if I've left everything behind.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Background and final design

I should probably explain a little more about myself and Pod boy, most especially how we ended up in the pod.

I'm a 25 year old Kiwi, I'm in my last semester of nursing school. I sit my State exam on the 20th of July, and then 11 days later I have a one way ticket over to the pod. I spent a few years at University working on my BA in English and History with the intention of becoming a secondary school teacher; however, towards the end of that I had a wee crisis and couldn't face the thought of actually teaching. I don't think I'm really assertive enough, I would love teaching much more if there were no teenagers in the room who didn't want to learn. So I enrolled in the nursing program and have loved it ever since. This last semester is when we get to choose the speciality we want to focus on, I'm doing my elective placement at Psych Emergency.

Pod boy is 33 and (unfortunately) Australian. He's a residential carpenter. I can explain a little of what he does because I spent a few weeks as his pseudo apprentice. Basically, from my understanding, he does a lot of driving around in the pod to various job sites, when there he makes coffee, eats lunch and then goes to the beach for the night. I kid, he actually puts in very long hours with various electrical tools, compressors and dust.

I'll never forget the day that Pod boy first told me he was considering moving into the pod. Until 10 months ago, when it underwent a small transformation, the pod had been used to transport the tools of carpentry. It had (reportedly) a timber floor with various shelving units. I couldn't imagine how that particular van could ever be a "home". When Pod boy moved into the pod he bought a tradesman trailer for his tools and put some click-lock foam on the floor. Slowly he put a cupboard along the driver's side of the van and a small cupboard over the wheel arch on the passenger side. He put a big shelf between the two cupboards in front of the back window.

When I first visited him in the pod we found that the small sleeping space was very cosy, I liked it but Pod boy found it too cosy. We managed with the space as it was for 3 weeks as we travelled down the East coast of Australia but when we decided that I would move over permanently we realised the pod would have to undergo a big change. We talked over various designs for 6 weeks but hadn't finalised anything. I went back for a couple of weeks and Pod boy removed the smaller cupboard which made the sleeping space slightly bigger but limited the storage space. We decided then that we would completely change the interior before August.

These were the design specifications that we came up with:

Pod boy's wants:
  • Bed space to take up the entire available floor space - therefore have to have a raised platform.
  • Have to have decent headroom when kneeling (for various reasons!)
  • During the day the design has to be easily packed away with nothing moving around. It also has to be dog friendly.
Crickle's wants:
  • Red, charcoal and black colouring with hints of white.
  • Photo boards that I can stick my memories to.
  • Bed has to have a softish mattress.
  • Pod boy has to snuggle when it's chilly.
We came up with a few designs we thought would work and settled on one. I was all gung ho for the rebuild to start, but Pod boy wanted to think some more. I'm glad he did because I got inspired and we totally redesigned the pod in our heads. This time I drew plans and we think we've finally settled on this design. We've found that vandwelling is dynamic and it is important to be willing to change and compromise.

This is the floor plan of our current design:

I fell in love with Pod boy even more when I realised that he could understand my cryptic drawings. They're not to scale and he has to do a lot more work than these basic drawings make it look like, but this will give you a rough idea of the final design.

I'm hoping that Pod boy has bought a camera today, we talked about it this morning but he has a notoriously bad memory. His other camera is broken, but I'm pretty sure it's still in the glovebox. I've been given strict instructions about the number of shoes and the amount of clothes that I'm allowed to bring over with me, I'll post tomorrow and remind Pod boy of the necessity of throwing stuff away when living as vandwellers.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Why live in a pod?

People are incredulous when we say we would rather live in a van than a house. Both of us have had members of our respective families tell us that we "need" to have a house. My mother, for instance, can't possibly see why I would want to live in a van.

For me the pod truly feels like home, I'm unsure if it's just because it's where Pod boy is or whether it really is the draw of the pod. The nomadic nature of vandwelling appeals to me because it's cheap, fun, ever changing and it doesn't hold the stresses of bills. Lastly for me the pod offers a lifestyle that is totally unencumbered - you take nothing with you that you don't need and you can easily rid yourself of your own personal judgements, norms and values making you totally free.

This is what Pod boy says about living in the pod: "I guess I don't want to be a slave to the money lenders and I don't want to work for the lords of the land. I don't want to be in bondage. I can afford to live in a house, I just choose not to. When I buy a house it will be an honorable transaction. Something changes inside you when you don't have a home to rush home to. It took a while to understand that I was at home wherever I was. It was an adjustment to realise I was at home in my own skin."

For our families who live very traditional lives these are very hard things to understand. They are rigidly set in their values and norms which are all about security and doing the approved thing. The sense of needing approval from those around us is exactly why I like living in the van. There are times when I just want to make love in the rain, or shout to the clouds or bask naked in the sunlight: the pod allows me to do this without judgement of myself. I'm slowly learning to let my self judgements go, I've been non judgemental of others for a long time but I have firmly held self judgement that I'm working hard to get rid of. One day I want to be intimately acquainted with my true self, I want to hold acceptance for each and every part of me. Living in the pod allows me to do this.

An example of this is a discussion that Pod boy and myself had about 20 minutes ago. He said "I love your sense of style" in a tone that told me he was lightly mocking me. It got me to thinking and I realised that when I'm in the van with him I only put clothes on so that I am covered. I don't worry about being "put together" or about making a statement with my clothing. At home in New Zealand I definitely think about what I'm going to wear, how my hair will be done and I put my outfits together with a sense of style. In the van I usually grab a top and a bottom, I don't care if they go together, I don't consider what accessories I will wear or whether my shoes match. This is completely freeing, but it does lead people to believe you have no style!

At the moment vandwelling is perfect for the work I have to do on myself, and it's great for our relationship. If one day Pod boy and I decide to live a more conventional life I know I will take so much from our days in the pod.

Roadside kitchen

Our kitchen is housed in the passenger side of the tradesman trailer attached to the pod. It's relatively well organised; however, Pod boy has big plans for an external pantry, more shelves and drawers. I'll explain more about the actual details of the kitchen at a later date, it's hard from 2,404 km away. As I wrote yesterday the most exciting part of the kitchen is the new fridge, which I have yet to see in reality.

Yesterday Pod boy bought a mini-Weber (open coal-fired BBQ). He cooked lamb on it last night and raved over it, so he's having the same again for lunch today.

Pod boy doesn't mind repetitive food, he once ate mee goreng noodles everyday at lunch for "an easy 6 months". Then his head exploded and he went to the shop and bought a frypan, a chopping board and a knife, he already had a small BBQ that he used to make coffee each morning so he was set for cooking lunch each day. Pod boy is a carpenter, so his usual day consisted of getting up, leaving home, driving to the job site, setting up the BBQ to brew a strong black coffee before starting his daily work. When he realised that cooking lunch on the BBQ was so easy he started to realise that living in the van was a possibility. It definitely helped that at this time he was a vegan so he was only really cooking up veges; however, when I came into his life he ventured into the world of meat again. This is funny to me because I have never been a big meat eater so I was originally stoked to have a non meat eating I'm stoked to have Pod boy in any shape or form so if he wants to eat paper I'm down with that too.

Lamb on the coals

Marinade: lemon juice, soy sauce, rosemary, good olive oil, Tabasco and garlic. (Leave for at least 1 hour).

Cook over coals until meat is completely cooked. Pod boy doesn't like any hint of blood in his meat (a hang over from his vegan days), if I were there I would require my meat to be a lot less cooked than that.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Love across the ocean

It's very hard with Pod boy and pod dog so far away from me. We're relying on Skype to talk each night after we've both finished doing all that we have to do, but the connection is often dodgy for the pod people. Of late Skype has been acting up and refusing to let us connect properly, we're coping: but barely.

Pod boy has the pod decked out with batteries, satellite broadband and two laptops. We've found through trial and error that with BigPond providing the internet service he gets internet all over Melbourne, so he can be settled anywhere for the evening and we can talk. We've also got the battery life down to a fine art, and there aren't many nights now where we are unable to have Skype running all night without the battery giving up.

In terms of electrical appliances that currently live in the pod, we have: the laptop, a heater, a fan, electric hair clippers, a slow cooker, a toaster and lastly (but most excitingly) a fridge! Pod boy bought the fridge about 10 days ago, just after I last left him and pod dog. It was a very exciting purchase, I was eagerly waiting near my laptop to hear whether the fridge had found itself a space in the side of the trailer that we call a kitchen. The fridge is run from external power at the moment, but we're hoping to hook it up to solar panels in the near future. Neither of us know much about them, so we have more research to do.

Pod boy is breathing very deeply at the other end of Skype right now, he sounds very peaceful so I'm off to join him in dreamland.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

What is a pod!?

Our pod is our home. It's actually a 2008 Mitsubishi Express SWB van that is about to be re-renovated to better suit our needs. I'll post some pictures later, but at the moment the pod is very basic. We have a design in mind that we're hoping will be both practical and spacious - well as spacious as a 1500mm x 2250mm space can be!

Pod boy and pod dog began living in the pod about ten months ago and have found it invigorating and grounding. Pod boy's loved being able to pick and choose where he sleeps each night and the constantly changing views outside the pod door are beautiful. Pod dog doesn't care where he sleeps or what the view's like so long as Pod boy is somewhere close and he has something to nibble on.

I don't currently live in the pod, but my heart is there. When I'm in the pod it's very cosy, and as I'm moving over in August the pod's interior needs to grow to accommodate the extra body and clothing.

Pod boy is based in Australia and I am in New Zealand. If we defined our housing situation it would have to be known as "van dwelling", this is a relatively common thing and is surprisingly comfortable.

Pod boy's about to rebuild the interior, I'm supervising from across the ocean. He enjoys it when I crack the whip, he often says "harder, please". We'll post some pictures soonish; but the blog won't really be under way until after August when I can officially call myself a pod person.