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40

May 2nd, 2014 at 12:08 am

This is the kind of post I somehow dread making, but here goes anyway. Some of you may or may not remember me, but while I have been horribly absent, I never really left. I just prefer to keep things low key seeing as how I was fairly certain people who are related to my ex were tracking me here, and as some of you regulars might recall, I was going through a fairly messy divorce and aftermath at the time.

So, I made a new identity here and assumed a quieter life, though once again, I also confess that I have not been as frugal or active here as I could have been either. So, in a way, it was an "easy" way out in more than one sense of the word.

However, as I approach 40 years of age.... Ugh, I hate saying that, but I have to face that I am just not as young as I used to be anymore, I am also about to embark on a new chapter of my life. One that can not directly link me to my other identity, as one of my co-workers found out about it, and uh, what I am about to do will have quite a lot to do with work....

So as I pondered creating yet another identity, I thought to myself, "This is ridiculous. Stop cluttering the blogs with your paranoid whackiness." Soo, that's why I am back to blogging here, under my original name, because I would think it's fairly safe by now to "recycle" this account instead.

So let me stop beating around the bush and say what I have in mind and why I am "back". For my 40th birthday, my parents have pledged to pitch in and help me buy a car to replace my current beater. I don't know why they are being so generous to me, but they are. I am forever grateful to my parents for this and all that they have done for me in the past. They have also stated that this will be the last time they will be helping me out with anything monetarily, and I understand completely. Knowing the value of this opportunity, I do not want to squander it.

Forty is supposedly when your car insurance drops even further, and as of this point, I am still single and will probably be so into the foreseeable future.

Add it all up, and I am 90% certain that I will finally make my move towards buying a vehicle to DIY into a mobile living space... as soon as some time this month. Bypass the entire deal with rent or mortgage. Just go cheap and be a vandweller.

Now, even amongst the frugal community, vandwellers don't exactly get the kind of support and understanding they may deserve, especially with those who do this voluntarily. Still, it makes sense for me to do this. My job simply does not allow tardiness. At all. (I work in a jail.) Even when there is severe inclement weather, I still have to be here to relieve the other shift, even if it means that I never leave in the first place.

Something else to consider is the fact that, earlier in April, a co-worker of mine wrecked his car and ended up in a hospital simply because he fell asleep. He broke his ankle, his rib cage, his nose, and shattered his knee when he front-ended a tree and the engine block landed in his lap.

The hours can be painfully long here sometimes. I surprised myself when I realized that I worked 122+ hours the last couple of weeks. And what's scary is that I know some have worked even more than that.

The solution here is easy as well, though is far from palatable: Simply don't leave work. Sure, the work place has about as much accommodations as any other office building, but it still beats wrapping my car around a tree.

And that's when my 2-watt lightbulb went off again. I thought, well, what if I just set up my next car so I can sleep in it? On top of all of these other reasons, I might also be able bypass any future rent and mortgage this way. And I will still be able to stay here if work or mother nature dictates that I not leave. It has happened before, and it will probably happen again. I can set up my vehicle to be as comfortable as my current bedroom, maybe more, AND I should be able to do it all with $20k or less.

In fact, the workplace here already has a free gym, and free showers, as well as free usage of bathrooms, 24/7. For vandwellers, this is something they grudgingly pay for with gym memberships, but I get it for free.

The downside is that the workplace does not have a set policy about people sleeping in their cars. I assume that management doesn't have an overwhelming issue with it, but once again, this is something I want to keep as low key as possible just to be on the safe side. Good or bad, a lot of my own money will be riding on this to work.

But at the same time, it's not a huge amount. In fact, it's well within the cost of even a regular car. So, it's not something I can't easily recover from if it doesn't work out. I will also be experimenting and easing into this slowly.

So that is why I am back. As BA. I'm getting old, but still just about as crazy, and I'm about to embark on my next misadventure in my life. Good or bad, feel free to come along for the ride, and maybe we can share a few good laughs about it along the way.

19 Responses to “40”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Welcome back! I think I figured recently that you were here under another identity...just started to sound more like BA. Smile

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Good luck with the vandwelling. I have a cousin, that I think might hop on that same adventure at some point in his life. I look forward to hearing how it works for you.

  3. CB in the City Says:

    It sounds like you've thought out the vandwelling idea and I think you're on to something! Having the gym available is a big plus. I'm sure that if your employer has a policy about vandwelling it is not a good one, so I would keep it as low-key as possible. Give them plenty of space to look the other way!

  4. Mooshocker Says:

    Give 'em hell BA!

  5. Ima saver Says:

    Welcome back, BA, I have missed you. Gosh, I sure wish I was 40 again. That was the best time of my life. (I moved here to the mountains!)

  6. ceejay74 Says:

    Welcome back! I must admit, I wasn't thrilled to turn 40, but so far it's a pretty great age! I feel more confident and motivated and capable than I ever have in my life.

  7. Shiela Says:

    Great to hear from you again BA. Looking forward to hearing more about your new dwelling adventure.

  8. Broken Arrow Says:

    Hey, wow, thanks for supportive feedback. The community certainly hasn't forgotten how to make a guy feel welcome.

  9. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    BA! Was so glad to see a post from you. Smile I take it you'll be using your closet living experience to help with the vandwelling? Big Grin 40's not old ... especially since I'll be 40 in 19 short months .... ! Smile

  10. Broken Arrow Says:

    Hey Texan. I don't see why it's so weird to sleep in a closet. I mean, it's just an indoor room like most other. In fact, at this point, I much prefer it, seeing as how it is much easier to keep it warm in the winter and cold in the summer.

    However, a vehicle will be quite a bit different. I hear it is more akin to camping outdoors in a tin can. So that's the challenge, to build from there into something much more livable. It can be done. I've seen it done. Now I just have to get it done for myself.

  11. Bluebird Says:

    Welcome back and good luck!

  12. TashaC. Says:

    Welcome back! I left for years as well and returned last year. I'm glad you are doing well. And I do remember you!

    Real quick- are you dating? Cuz I don't think a girl is going to want to hook up with a guy in his room in a van. And where are you going to store your clothes? And TV? Video games? Is all that done on a computer these days?

  13. Thrifty Ray Says:

    and you were never far from our thoughts BA...I still think of you every time I hear 'Baby its cold outside'!! Wink

  14. Thrifty Ray Says:

    and 40 is the new 20 isn't it?

  15. Broken Arrow Says:

    Thanks gang, for the welcome back....

    Tasha: Not currently. I've dated a couple since the last time I was here, but it didn't quite work out. And yes, you are correct of course that living out of a van greatly reduces my chances with someone of a female persuasion.

    As for electronics, I'm usually on my phone or laptop nowadays; things that can easily be used in a van so long as there is a way to stay connect on the internet. That's yet another challenge, because even those who vandwell typically will have internet access to stay connected.

    Thrifty Ray: Glad you're still around! Hope you are still enjoying being Gramma Ray. I don't know what this makes me. Hopefully, this will be my best decade yet. Either way though, all I can do is keep moving forward, eh?

  16. scfr Says:

    Hey BA - Good to see you again! Please stop all the nonsense about getting old ... I have you beat by over a decade, so what would that make me? Big Grin

  17. Broken Arrow Says:

    Good to see you again, scfr. Hey, did not mean anything bad like that. Life is better here, I admit, compared to my past so, I really can't complain haha.

  18. Banker Gurl Says:

    "I will also be experimenting and easing into this slowly."
    So what are the steps to starting such an experiment? And is this going to be like an actual vehicle? Or more like some type of camper/winabagoish (yes, winabagoish is a word!)type transport?

  19. Petunia in a Flower Garden Says:

    Belated birthday wishes! Forty isn't so bad - better than the alternative, at least it was for me anyway. Smile (I think I'm in scfr peer age group.)

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