In late April (2015), I stumbled on an article by a guy who calls himself The Office Hobo. The title, I Secretly Lived in my Office for 500 Days, intrigued me. I was minimizing, I was living simply, but I was also paying a small fortune for rent. If only my office didn’t have cameras everywhere…
As I made my way through the article, I found myself smiling, nodding in agreement and saying “heck yeah” under my breath often. Finishing up the last 4 paragraphs, if I hadn’t known before, I knew now I had found a kindred spirit. I didn’t know him and I would likely never meet him, but I related to him completely and I got everything he was saying. Someone had put into words what I was feeling but could not properly express.
I was always drawn to nature as therapy but also loved the vibrancy of the city. Too much time spent in either place left me unhappy and longing for the other. The answer was actually simple, if I lived a mobile lifestyle, I could have both. I could wake up to the crash of the waves on the shore one day, and the sirens of the city streets the next. I could live deep in the forest in May then spend my days people watching on Venice Beach in November. I knew it would sound crazy to most people, but it made more sense to me than anything in my life to date. I was happier than I had been in a long time just thinking about it, and I’m a pretty happy person as it is!
I stopped trying to climb the career ladder 3 years ago. I just woke up one day and realized didn’t want a career, I wanted a life filled with experiences, not work and stress. That revelation freed me from any residual desire for money and things, but I still wasn’t free. I got a simple job that paid pretty well and showed up most of the time they expected me to. In every minute of my spare time I meditated, read books and watched videos, determined to find my purpose. I wanted to do something that inspired me because I knew that was where I would find complete and true happiness. I was desperately looking for my bliss.
Then finally, after reading this article, it all came together. I could work part-time (or less), become a better writer, travel on a whim, photograph everything, and take a mid-afternoon hikes on any day of the week I desired. I would study people, have conversations with the homeless, hug a stranger, volunteer, climb a (small) mountain or hike a new trail. Maybe it wasn’t yet the complete picture of my purpose, but I knew I was on the right path. It was time to formulate an escape plan.
In the days that followed, I began developing a plan but knew right away I could not live in my car because of my cats. In no potential parallel universe that may or may not exist in the infinite-ness of the unknown, would you ever see me giving up my cats. Ever. Undeterred, I began to research similar options that might work for me. I will explain those discoveries in part 4.