Its no secret that we’ve been pondering “what’s next” for a while now, particularly since we’ve returned from the Virgin Islands.
Sailboat? Not yet.
International adventures? Yes, we want more extended jaunts to exotic places. But we want to keep some sort of (mobile) base in the US to return to, so that we can regularly spend time with friends and family here. And after an extended stretch in St. John, we are ready to be back on the mainland for a bit before heading out again.
More RV’ing? Well… We love our RV’ing lifestyle, but the thought of another cross-country trek in our Oliver was feeling a bit “been there, done that” and just not very exciting. We’ve mastered life in a 17′ fiberglass egg, and we’ve been craving something new, more space and new challenges.
Our Oliver (named “Orion”) is the one of the most well designed and engineered travel trailers ever built, and it was made custom for us – with every detail down to the tile on the floor, the gauge of the electrical wire, the solar panels on the roof, and the fabric on the seats carefully chosen. Before Oliver shut down their production indefinitely, less than 50 of them were made.
How could we give up something so uniquely ours? The trailer has become iconic to us, and part of our identity.
The more we thought about it, the more we grew open to the idea that the time was right to move on, and we even started dropping hints that we might be open to selling later this year.
Meanwhile, we started thinking that a smaller motorhome would be a next step for us, and started to research suitable unique vehicles – including the awesome GMC Motorhome and more recently, smaller vintage buses like the Flxible (yes, inspired by our friend’s Ben & Karen and the bus they’re currently converting) and GMC 4104. We’re so thankful to have knowledgable bus-nut friends in Ben & Karen and Sean & Louise of Our Odyssey to keep reality in check during this research.
(We post daily to our Facebook Page if you want to keep up with what we’re currently researching or up to.)
The universe had other ideas
Just as soon as we had mentally made peace with the idea of moving on from the Oliver, literally within hours, the phone rang.
The conversation went something like this:
Him: “Hi, you may not remember me, but I’m the guy who asked about your Oliver at that campground on the Blue Ridge Parkway last year.”
Us: “Of course we remember you! Who could forget someone coming up to our campsite and asking if we were in Carlsbad, New Mexico a couple months before.. where you first saw our trailer in a parking lot.’
Him: “My retirement dream is owning an Oliver like yours, I’ve been calling the factory every couple months… and I detected you might be open to selling yours? I know how unique they are and what they’re worth.”
Yeah, serendipity tends to work that way for us. And being serendipity’s minions and all, we listen.
We get to help make somebody’s dream come true, and we don’t have to spend time searching out a buyer? Sounds promising.
Oh, and it turns out he needs a tow vehicle too, and is interested in buying our matched Tundra. And he’s right – he really does know what an Oliver configured like ours is worth. His opening offer makes it well worth it for us to move quickly and not pursue a bidding war amongst our growing list of interested potential buyers. And he also wants to buy Cherie’s older laptop – which has the same custom graphical design on the case as on the side of our trailer?!?!
Could this be for real? Sell the matched set in one fell swoop?
That phone call came last Tuesday, less than a week ago. The non-refundable deposit check arrived yesterday. It’s real. A perfect match delivered before we sought it out.
A week from now we’ll be in transit from Florida, making a beeline to Virginia to deliver our baby to its new loving home.
Yeah, our heads are spinning! We’re a mix of anxious and excited!
And in just over a week – we will be very literally homeless, without even a vehicle in our name. We opened the door to possibility, and serendipity swept in like a tidal wave, leaving us with a completely blank slate to paint our next adventure upon.
We do have to solve some imminent logistical issues though, and are opening ourselves to a range of possibilities…
- We are considering buying (or maybe renting) a cheap ($2k – $10K) older 23-35′ motorhome that we can move into temporarily while we head off in search of our ideal next home-on-wheels. Leads are appreciated on suitable RV’s for sale or folks open to renting theirs to us between Florida and Virginia.
- Or… Maybe we’ll find a suitable vintage bus in move-in condition within the next week, and head towards it once we hand over the Oliver in a one-way rental U-haul or borrowed vehicle. If you know of any converted Flxible, GM, Wanderlodge, or other cool (35′ and under) buses for sale – let us know!
- Or… Maybe we’ll decide to buy a less-than-ideal but very affordable and ready to live in “starter bus”, so that we can try out bus living for a few months before we invest more in a different rig and/or extensive upgrades. We have our eye on one promising starter bus in Salt Lake City, but that is a long way to travel for “promising”, so we’re likely not ready to jump on that right away.
- Or… To buy ourselves a bit more time to find either a temporary or (semi)permanent new home on wheels, perhaps we will seek out a weekly or monthly rental of a place to live and a vehicle to drive – spending a few weeks in Virginia while shopping for what is next. If anyone has any leads on house sitting opportunities, garages to temporarily unload our stuff into, or short term condo or RV rental opportunities, or, or, or…. anywhere near Lynchburg, VA – let us know!
A lot is up in the air, and serendipity is busily reshaping our lives yet again.
It is exhilarating, exciting, and exhausting to even think about.
The next few weeks will be crazy.