If you’d like to hear how we are doing and what we are up to please read further. If not, blessings and no hard feelings.
Some film photos Ali and I took over the course of the summer will be accompanying the writing.
We had a wild summer, a hard summer, not relationally but, circumstantially. To recount it (summer) in a way where you don’t have to read the 1000+ words I previously wrote and took the humbling liberty of deleting:
We were living in our van full time while working 40+ hours a week and averaging 172 miles of driving per day…
I didn’t think to pull out the film camera and load a roll while we were finding a place to sleep, fixing our fridge, filling our water, or pooping at a coffee shop. Those moments would have helped me illustrate the difficulty of summer well. Fortunately/unfortunately all I have to show for a tough three month period of life is all the best moments with a couple doses of reality: making 3, 2000 mile round-trip drives to Seattle and back to Santa Barbara, shooting weddings, and spending hours in coffee shops. These (mostly) best moments of the summer can be seen burned into little strips of film developed below.
Also, if you need to know the cheapest place for diesel or the best coffee in San Diego, Anaheim, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Philo, Redding, Eugene, Bend, Portland, Olympia, Seattle, San Juan Island, or Bellingham…we’ve got you covered.
When most people think of vanlife they think of travel, adventure, wanderlust, and all the “outdoor” buzzwords that should be made illegal. Our version of vanlife: working 40+ hours weekdays/working weekends/doing school/counting the fun trips we did on one hand was really hard for both Ali and I. We hoped for a sense of freedom and peace in our summer of living in a van but found only unrest, separation from community, and a deep yearning to be grounded at a single place, a home.
After 3 months of summer and as of three weeks ago I’m happy to say we are done…and with that, some big changes have happened in the last couple weeks.
I started working at Campovans full time again (its been over a year since I started there, with a summer hiatus for weddings…we make vans into campers), Ali and I are about to move into a rad studio apartment in the garage of the one-and-only Byron and Robyn Beck’s home, and my schedule has had more consistency in the last three weeks than I’ve had in the last year and a half.
On the note of schedule consistency: I’ve made the big decision to step away from Sid & Ali Photography and our wedding video work (if you’ve booked us already you’ve got nothing to worry about - I’m still there and PSYCHED) to pursue Campovans with a more committed schedule. This decision was on my own accord with no pressure from my hard a** boss Byron ;). Ali has decided to keep shooting photos under the name @AliBeckPhoto and I couldn’t be more stoked and supportive of her decision. (Ali also has a stellar food blog called @freshrootshealth and you should seriously check it out).
After Ali and I’s final wedding together I will shift gears into a full schedule at Campo, and will have more time to develop some rad ideas with fellow co-workers Isaiah, Mike and Daniel as we launch a new branch of the company (more news on that as it progresses).
In the mean time, Ali and I want to start hosting monthly farm to table dinners, buy a more reliable scooter, surf, watch sunsets, love Jesus a whole lot more than we do today, have weekly coffee with friends, live more open handed, and bless more people with the lives that we’ve been blessed enough to have.
Simply put, our desire isn’t for the wildness of life to be centered on a 1000 mile car ride, a place to sleep, the next job, the next coffee shop to poop in, or the next rest stop to stretch at. No, our desire is for the wildness of life to be centered on community, love the for people around us, living open handed, and making the choice of joy.
Peace and Blessings.
You are rad for reading this through.
Your friends, Sid & Ali.