We’ve been three months on the road right now, so it’s time to reflect on vanlife so far. 

Up to now we still feel so privileged and happy that we’re able to do this. Travelling brings us so much freedom, we get to see wonderful places, explore known and unknown parts of the world and venture where we haven’t been before. We get to see amazing sunrises, sunsets and everything in between. In the mornings we don’t know where we end at night. We drink coffee with the kindest of people, have lunch while hearing interesting stories and experience true hospitality.

This journey has brought us so much already!

We spent; €2.000 on gasoline
That’s 1650 liters of gasoline
We drove about 12.200 kilometers
And Alexine devoured 14 liters of oil

But back to vanlife. Cause it ain’t all about meeting people, eating delicious dishes and watching sunsets. It’s also about preparing the van for sleeping, finding a nice place to stay the night and well keeping the engine going. Not to forget using nature as a toilet & shower.

Living in a van

So how’s that going? It’s going quite well! Yes it’s a small space we live in, we can’t stand upright inside and it easily gets messy. Of course we sometimes disagree or argue but the van is too small to ignore each other for too long 😉 in three months we have kind of started a routine, preparing the bed in the evening and the van for the journey ahead in the morning is something Milene often does. Preparing coffee is Yuri’s task. Finding a place to stay for the night gets easier. In the beginning of our trip we didn’t sleep so well. I, Milene, because I needed to get used to sleeping wherever we want and Yuri because of the bed. But nowadays we sleep wonderfully and feel very relax and safe in the van.

Van maintenance

Alexine is doing great, however every strange sound we hear makes our hearts jump. We’ve had two major problems up to now. One was a broken cable from the battery to the alternator. Unfortunately the garage didn’t understand the problem and they changed the whole alternator. Then we had to change the homokineet at the right back wheel. And at the moment of writing we have another problem. A strange sound from the engine. It’s either the alternator or the fan. We will try to switch our old alternator back where it belonged and hopefully it will fix the problem. If it’s the fan it’ll be a bigger problem so let’s keep our fingers crossed.

Then there’s the always checking oil, finding the best gasoline even if there’s none and washing her very regularly. But it’s like taking care of a child. You have to make sure she drinks enough, is clean and treat her as a queen. That’s what we do and it’s part of our trip. It doesn’t feel like a burden at all. It’s actually fun to take care of her, yes even filling her with oil. And the gasoline stops in Turkey were great!! We got tea and a nice conversation at most gasstations. 

The outdoor life

Our lives have changed 360 degrees. From being inside often due to work or a Netflix addiction to being always outside and driving hours and hours and hours. From washing ourselves every day in a nice hot shower to once a week in a cold stream or lake. From white clean skin to brown and dusty. And it doesn’t matter. Nobody cares that I haven’t shaved my legs for two weeks, or that Yuri didn’t trim his beard or that we wear the same clothes for more than three days. I suppose that’s actually how it should be. Taking a shower everyday is insane, wearing clothes only once is ridiculous and caring whether someone shaved her legs or trimmed his beard is bullshit. We’ve lived this privilege life for so long that we don’t know what is truly important. Fresh clothes or a shower ever day isn’t it, We are sure about that right now. 

To conclude; travelling in a van is amazing, driving the Silk Road is an adventure and the freedom we feel indescribable. 3 months in 9 months to go. 

Love, Milene & Yuri