Vanabode Book Review
From Smart Hiking and Camping Tips
I just read a unique and very interesting ebook called Vanabode: Happily Camp, Travel, And Live Forever On $20 A Day. Vanabode is a term coined by the author, Jason Odom, which he defines as "to happily abide in a four wheeled box shaped vehicle providing transportation and housing." This is "van camping" taken to a whole new level. The idea is that with the right strategies you can live well in a van, eliminating your housing expenses entirely and allowing you to travel indefinitely while spending very little.
Now, you may not want to sell your house, quit your job and live in a van full time. But you'll still find lots of practical information to help you take longer camping trips, see more, and do it more cheaply and in greater comfort than ever before. As he says in the book, "Vanaboding is about traveling further, easier and cheaper for longer periods of time than any other method of travel."
This appealed to me right away because I've often dreamed of being able to take an extended, months-long vacation to travel around the United States and visit many of the National Parks and other amazing wilderness areas in this country. The information in this book makes that dream much more "do-able". In fact, my wife and I are already making plans to live that dream, using the strategies outlined in Vanabode.
Image above shows one of hundreds of beaches we visit nearly every year thanks to the Vanabode lifestyle. Image © Serghei Starus - Dreamstime.com
The book begins with an explanation of what Vanaboding is and why it is superior to any other form of living or traveling. Here's how the author describes the lifestyle: "When Vanaboding you will sleep in your own bed just like you do at your house. You can have a hot shower or bath every day. You will be able to afford to eat out at new and exciting restaurants every day because you won't be blowing money on much else.
You can cook hot meals on the road made from the freshest ingredients, organic fruits, vegetable, and from produce stands around the country." Vanaboding is contrasted with the typical American lifestyle which is called "work to buy then die." "To Vanabode is to be on an adventure without much sacrifice. You can have all the essentials that make a life enjoyable: excellent food, laughter, fun, big romantic adventures, healthy sex, protection from the weather, and a good night's sleep at very little cost." Vanaboding is contrasted with other forms of travel and living: air, car, and hotel travel; motor homes and RVs; backpacking; owning a home; boats; car camping; and even being homeless.
The author articulates a philosophy of minimalist travel and living which minimizes expenses and responsibilities, while maximizing freedom, fun and adventure. He emphasizes simplicity - carefully thinking through what is truly necessary and eliminating what is not in order to stay free, unencumbered and happy. He shows the exact kind of vehicle for travel and living. It is large enough to sleep comfortably and store the essential equipment, while small enough to maneuver through crowded city streets and even take off-road. You can find many places to sleep for free without any trouble be following his plan exactly.
Careful attention is given to the "essentials of a great life": * Excellent food, * Good sleep, * Good personal hygiene, * Healthy sex, * Fun - Each of these elements depends on the others and all are important to enjoy life on the road to the fullest. The following chapters address many other practical concerns: * Navigation
* Discretion, * Budget, * Mail, * Camping in National Parks, * Weather, * Safety, weapons and security, * Getting out of debt, * Making money while traveling, * Inventory of equipment. There's also information on playing poker and links to related information such as free camping locations and income opportunities.
Continued. . .
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