Our next interview will have you highly considering ditching your usual comforts and moving into a portable home that free’s you up to get around, as you please.
Meet the Happy Camper Wives, Valerie and Jessi. The pair sold all their belongings and hit the road a little over 7 months ago. They have been living the digital nomad life ever since, moving around the USA and Canada, while sharing their experiences with their followers and giving an insight into what it is like living within a tiny tear drop home.
We may have spent our morning researching the costs of caravans and day dreaming about a life without limits (or many? depends on which way you look at it)
Meet The Happy Camper Wives, Valerie and Jessi.
Why do you choose to travel?
We travel because we love how traveling expands our minds through new experiences. Whether experiencing breathtaking mountains, sophisticated cities, or kind and interesting people, our existing way of being or thinking about the world is often transformed to include new perspectives. Plus it’s fun! We love to go out to eat…but going out to eat in a new city with new types of foods and flavors is even more fun!
How long have you been travelling in your camper van and how often do you travel?
We’ve been full-time on the road for seven months now. We try to spend a week to a month in each destination, so we usually drive between locations on weekends. Since we live in a teardrop camper, this year we charted a course around the USA and Canada, trying to follow the good weather, and visit our bucket list of natural wonders around the country.
What made you decide to do this?
Well, long story short, Valerie asked Jessi if we could, Jessi said no way in hell, and here we are. It just made sense in our life right now. Jessi was able to work remotely, we don’t have children, and we had already rid of ourselves of world possessions- when else are we going to have this opportunity? When life gives you a window, you have to leap because it could quickly turn into a shut door.
The most interesting person you have met on the road?
Our favorite couple of all time has been Jennifer and Ray. Once we met this couple, we never wanted to stop talking. They’ve been RVing all over Europe (a huge dream of ours), have been traveling for years, are small business owners, and simply awesome. They smile more than most, laughed at our stupid jokes and exuded warmth with every word shared.
And their warmth, wanderlust and generosity was present even in the midst of the fact that Jennifer is dying. She has a rare genetic disease that only 70 people in the world have, and the average life expectancy is 35. Her disease, known as GATA2, was named only four years ago: it’s that rare. Her first 45 years were spent with a disease that had no name, doctors that didn’t know what was wrong, and people telling her she was fine. But she wasn’t fine. She was very, very sick but on the outside, she looked healthy.
Their biggest piece of advice was to not to put energy towards the things you can’t do. Instead, try to focus on what they can do. They inspired us to write one of our most popular articles: “Don’t Wait, Start Living Now.”
Your favourite social media platform?
Instagram…we love taking photos…it’s an ongoing quest to try to capture the beauty and wonder of the places we visit. Instagram allows us to tell the story of the places we visit in a visual way.
What cameras do you use?
Mostly an iPhone 6. We also have a Nikon D5100, but usually, use an iPhone of most adventure photos.
Can you tell us what your favourite editing software is?
Jessi is a designer by trade, so she is most familiar with Photoshop for design, but is still a novice in photo editing. Honestly, we love Instagrams’ editing tools. We find them easier and more effective than the little I know about Adobe Lightroom
Tell us about a time travel went wrong
Haha, where to start! When things spill inside the camper when we are on the road, it’s the absolute worst because the bumps of the road make things spill on practically every surface of our home. One time rice spilled, and we were picking it up for three weeks. Another time garlic salt spilled in the cabinet and ended up getting all over the counters, floor and even bed. Or the best was when we spilled sesame oil everywhere! Good thing we like the smell of garlic and sesame because it remained for days!
Top tip for someone just starting out on Instagram /blogging/ youtube
Just start doing it! Even the pros had to start somewhere. The best way to get better is practice and learn from people that inspire you. Study their videos/blogs/photos and see what makes them great. Try to replicate them, and be ok if your first attempts don’t look like the pros yet. Keep trying, and you can do anything!
Top tip for a first-time traveller ?
Go do it! If you’ve never travelled before, it may seem distant and unattainable, until you get out there and do a bit of it. Travelling to new places can be as easy as jumping in a car, or on a plane and just going!
Best food you have eaten on the road and in what country?
We are big foodies. We spend most of our money on culinary experience and we have to say, New Orleans has the best food in the USA. Every time we go there we are blown away by the creativity expressed in their food. Oyster beignets are a all time favorite of ours. Sweet, savory and oh so bad for the waistline! We gain 10+ lbs every time we visit and it’s worth every extra step to try to get it off. So good.
Finally, what is at the top of your bucket list?
Walking El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in Spain!
Follow their journey via the links below:
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