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Month: August 2017

We have looked at a lot of truck campers. Like any home search, there are things we love and things we dislike. One of the many appealing aspects of the Avion is its layout. There is a large table, wide open space, and a dedicated bathroom. But there is a major problem: a lot of the wooden fixtures are rotten. So, we are pulling everything out and starting from scratch. When one starts from scratch, the floor plan starts to change.

An important part in optimizing one's electrical system for boondocking is knowing what one's consumptions will be. If one already has the experience of being on the road, all one needs to do is monitor one's consumption. Sure, we have been nomads for 2 years. But that has been a matter of cooking over camp fires and working in coffee shops, libraries, or truck stops. To guess at our battery usage with all the conveniences of an RV, we an run the numbers to get a vague idea of what is to come.

The moment of totality is profoundly transcendent. Amidst the stars and planets, hemmed in by a 360° sunset, is a vision of the sun, in profile. Trust me, I have seen many pictures and videos before. I'll post many myself of what has been dubbed the "Great American Eclipse." But neither a thousand words nor a picture can truly do justice to the emotional immersion into a world, like our own, but seen in a completely alien light.

I am a firm believer in not allowing the perfect to be the enemy of the good. While having a completely renovated camper is preferable, we don't want to spend years in one place, building a dream camper when we could take the process in stages and travel as we work. We are prioritizing replacing rotten flooring, old wiring, and insulation so that we can reinstall the inner walls and travel as we complete the rest of the camper. Even in its gutted state, this camper is better than the shell we were living in before.

We settle into a new kind of normal around the Avion Ultra truck camper. Each morning, we wake up and discuss the day's priorities over breakfast. We work through the cool morning and early afternoon. If it gets too hot, we will break from heavy work in the heat of the afternoon to run errants: pick up tools and materials and make runs to the dump. We return to work in the evening, and clean the worksite at dusk. Over dinner, we discuss lessons learned from the day's work and tomorrow's goals. Before bed, we research tools, techniques, and inspiration for coming challenges.

Before he adopted the pen name Mark Twain, Samuel Clemens grew up in Hannibal, Missouri—the template for Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Fin's hometown. Today, the quiet town perched by the Mississippi is filled with callouts to Mark Twain and his famous creations. You can tour his home and learn about his complex relationship with the morals of his environment and the values he adopted later in life. In every quote, we are treated to the wit and wisdom of one of America's greatest storytellers.