Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Life On The Road. . .Living in 50 Square Feet - Part I

Life on the road is a unique lifestyle embraced by only a very small fraction of the population in the United States. As in most things, there are variations on the theme. Here are some examples: over the road truck drivers; traveling nurses; traveling specialists (engineers, technicians, consultants, evangelists and others); travel writers and photographers; artists; musicians; homeless/jobless; disabled; retirees and others, perhaps . . . like me. Another entire genre of “mobile” people include those who live on the water. But, that's another story for someone else.

Of course, the reasons, motivations and inspirations for all the people I've mentioned (and others I couldn't think of off the top of my head) are as varied as the various kinds of on the road people I mentioned. I should also mention, at this time, there are probably as many women, perhaps more, as there are men enjoying this lifestyle.

Those who are “housebound” or live in a fixed residential situation may not understand why people, especially like me and an untold number of my traveling friends, live this lifestyle. Many say they envy my freedom. Many are probably thinking, though unspoken . . . poor guy, he's broke, homeless and hungry. None of those are true in my case. I freely chose this lifestyle. Maybe I'm just reverting back to the “hippie” days I traded for college, graduate school, the Air Force during the Vietnam era, a business career and family.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Welcome to my world! Revisited - Year 9

Every year or so I revert back to my first post on this blog to review where it started and where it evolved to. This was post #1 on February 6, 2008. It was just a few days shy of nine months later when I left my ranch for the last time to pursue a very different lifestyle. And, it's now a little more than nine years ago since I wrote the original post. My notes indicating the changes and evolution in me, my lifestyle, my thinking and the blog are all in italics embedded in the copy of the original post.

This blog is about exactly what the title states - “living and working free.” Actually, the focus is now on how to live free including all facets of human experience and lifestyle and the name changed to "2 Live Freely” a couple years ago. Now, to make sure this concept is perfectly clear, I DO NOT mean living FOR free nor working FOR free. I mean living and working freely under our own rules, terms and conditions for our lifestyles and workstyles.

It is important to note that there are no rules, terms or conditions carved in stone that tell us how we should live or how we should work. The only rules are those that we each establish for ourselves in our own hearts and minds . . . unless we adopt the rules, conditions and terms that others may want to impose on us. This holds true to the current blog posts and my philosophical thinking - no significant changes.

My postings here are going to be based on MY feelings, opinions, concepts, wants and needs. What I say may or may not apply to you – or perhaps only parts of what I say may apply to you. So, do not, under any circumstances, consider anything I say here to be gospel. What I say only pertains to me and my life. The operative word in all of this is “FREE!”

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Reason WHY . . . Part II

Sunrise over the Gulf of Mexico on Padre Island National Seashore, Texas

The photo opening this post is from my current “yard.” I'm writing this from the beach of the Gulf of Mexico on the Padre Island (Texas) National Seashore. I awoke to a beautiful sunrise and slept last night to the sound of the surf. Today, my background inspiration, as I compose this article, is the surf (it's low tide), the breeze and the occasional sounds of a variety of birds on a beautiful sunny day with blue skies and a few puffy white clouds. I'm sitting comfortably at my desk in My McVansion. You won't read this until sometime after I've left this beautiful location since I don't have any wireless phone or Internet connection here. Another respite to enjoy.

You also see a photo of the My McVansion galley. I enjoyed a couple cups of Chai tea, a banana, some cantaloupe and I made myself a bagel sandwich flavored with maple syrup and an egg seasoned the way I like it, with melted cheese and smoked sausage to top it off. It was a magnificent breakfast and will probably carry me to dinner time, with, perhaps, a light snack to carry me over. Does it sound like I'm enjoying my life? Indeed! The big question in my mind is why (there's that word again) I didn't do this a lot sooner . . . or maybe for my entire life.

Here's a thought for you. If you are asking yourself 'why' about a lot of things in your past and current life, you likely have some serious, unresolved issues. It's my personal intention to reach the “final destination” (the same one we all arrive at, ultimately) with the greatest memories of all I did during my brief lifespan and not regretting all the things I never did, but always wanted to. Too many people end up bitter, if they live long enough, because they feel they were robbed or deprived of so many things they always wanted to do. But, in fact, they were neither robbed nor deprived. They made conscious choices to do and accept what their life turned out to be.

Why Do You Live Where You Live?

Saturday, February 4, 2017

The Reasons WHY . . . Part I

Have you ever wondered WHY?

  • you are who you are
  • you followed the career path(s) you did
  • you live where you live
  • you married the person(s) you married
  • you chose the lifestyle you're living today
  • you are exactly where you are in life – right now
  • you didn't end up where you dreamed you would

There are lots of why's – including the humorous question asked by a child of a father, “Why is the sky blue, Daddy?” (written with tongue in cheek.)

I've briefly touched on this subject from time to time. I don't dwell on it, but it does cross my mind periodically as I'm crisscrossing this great country, exploring, meeting with people, constantly learning new things and seeing interesting and exciting new places. I know I've said this before, but I'm freer and happier than I've ever been. I wish I had followed my early dreams and did this back when I was getting out of college and graduate school. But, like most people, “life happens.”

Circumstances, often, but not always, beyond our control place us on detours that become permanent routes. Some of those routes are circuitous and often have a lot of bumps and potholes. Most of us will simply accept whatever is ahead. Some will make wrong turns. Some will be fortunate enough to find some really good routes to follow. As the line from an old song goes made popular by Tommy Edwards in 1958, “It's All In The Game.”

Why So Many Whys

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Opportunities – 2017 Could Be A Banner Year For Them

First, allow me to extend my wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous 2017. A new year brings new opportunities

So, what are the indicators of opportunities in this year? First, we have a new president about to be inaugurated. Second, there are changes and issues in our economy that present opportunities for anyone keeping up with what's going on. Third, the world, through the Internet, is changing in interesting, exciting and, often, dramatic ways. This always offers opportunities.

It doesn't matter what your politics are. It doesn't matter what your social or economic positions or conditions are. It doesn't matter who you know or don't know. It doesn't matter what your educational background (or even a lack of educational background) is. It doesn't matter what your gender is or your color, race, ethnicity, marital status, age (considering you're probably 10 to 12 years old or older). Nothing really matters when it comes to opportunities other than your ability to recognize an opportunity and your vision.

You might be saying – but, I just don't get the lucky breaks. To that I refer back to one of the pivotal people in my life. He is one of the several pivotal people I can directly relate to where I am at this very moment in time as I write this article and why I'm sitting here writing it. I'm actually in My McVansion sitting in the driveway of a friend I met through this very blog. He's been reading it for years and invited me to meet up a couple years ago. The location is about a block from the shore of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida near St. Petersburg.

A Few Moments In Time That Changed The Course Of My Future

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Chest of Life

The end of my life is not something I dwell on. As a matter of fact, I look at the end of life as something that is inevitable and I should do some advance planning for, however, there are too many things I still want to do while I'm alive. That's one reason I tend to cringe every time someone says they are putting something on their “bucket list.” Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman launched and popularized the bucket list concept with their movie by the same name. I cringe because the term basically came from the idea of “kicking the bucket.”

Now, as I alluded to in the previous paragraph, I accept the inevitable, but I will not dwell on it. I have adopted the term “Life List.” It just seems a whole lot more positive than making a list of things I have to rush to do before I die. I, long ago, figured out I was going to die with unfinished business. But, why add a lot of stress on myself trying to accomplish what is, in reality, an impossible list to fulfill. Who knows, I may die sooner because of the stress I put on myself trying to complete the list.

I don't think I actually coined the term “life list.” I'm sure someone has thought of it before me. However, I have adopted it as one of my mantras, if you will. I have a life list of places to go, things to experience, old friends to meet up with and some people I'd like to meet (typically not celebrities). And, besides having a list that contracts and expands as my attitudes and whims change, I maintain a “Chest of Life” to remind me of the important events, places and people in my life.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Ho! Ho! Ho! A Very Merry . . . And An Especially Happy . . .

I want to take this opportunity to acknowledge this special time of the year. I know some of you are committed, Bible believing Christians. Others of you may be of the Jewish faith. There may be some Muslims, Hindus and believers of other religious faiths. And, certainly, I'm sure there are some non-practicing individuals and some agnostics and some atheists.

To me, it doesn't matter what your belief system is. I appreciate and respect you for who you are and how you live your life. It is beyond my position in the order of things to pass judgment on who may be right or wrong. Part of the freedom we are born with is to have free will and make choices and decisions that suit us individually.

So, during this particular season, whether you celebrate your chosen religious rituals and beliefs or celebrate it as a secular holiday and even if it's not your holiday season, I wish for you and all people around the world, peace on Earth and goodwill to all people.

Let each of us, in our own way, take a few moments during this holiday season to remember those around the world who may not be blessed as we are. They may not be comfortable or warm. They may not have adequate food, clothes or shelter. There are fighting men and women stationed around the world, many far from their families and friends. Let us not forget them. And, let's not forget that even in our own country (countries) there are those in need. In the case of the U.S., maybe an extra dollar in the Salvation Army Bell Ringer's bucket can be enough to make someone's day, week or year a little better.

Share time with family and friends. I don't know about you, but my family and friends are my true blessing and wealth. As a vandweller, I live in 50 square feet. I've had as much as 100 times that much space during periods of my life. It's not the amount of space that determines if one is safe, warm and comfortable. It's our attitude. I'm sitting in my tiny house outside Atlanta, Georgia as I write this message and I'm warm, comfortable and thankful. I hope wherever you are, you, too, are warm, comfortable and thankful. So, please have a very Merry whatever you'll celebrate.

I also want to wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2017. On January 1st of each year we are given a new lease on the next year. What does that mean? Simply this! No matter how great or bad last year may have been, a new window full of opportunities opens, if you choose to open your mind and heart to the possibilities. A perfect life is a life that is full of imperfections allowing us to learn and grow.

Keep your mind and heart open. I don't buy into resolutions, personally. However, each new year I review the past year, the past five or so years and even my entire life. I remember the pivotal people and pivotal events that influenced my life and brought me to the place I am today. I give thanks to the universe and the intelligence that afforded me the gift of life. And then, I ponder the future. I set some goals . . . some simple and some more far reaching. I consider the possibilities and opportunities that have been uncloaking and providing me with choices to make for the new year.

Go into the new year with anticipation of great things and a wonderful year. The chances are that's much more likely to happen than if you start the new year expecting the worst. That's especially true if the last year threw some curves, presented some serious challenges or was full of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. One way or another you can move past that and turn the new year into the best year, yet.

So, it is my sincere wish for you to have a very Merry . . . and an especially Happy . . . and always remember to live free and be happy. EH