Normally my weekends are filled with play and adventure but lately I have played a bit too much (if that is ever possible) and ignored the ever growing piles of stuff. When I found a magazine from 2011 I knew it was time to stay home and dig into the piles of papers, magazines and other that I’ve kept around for research or a variety of reasons.
I still made time to go for a hike each day and during one of those hikes I stood in awe at what nature has created. I was hiking in an area called Round Valley in Park City, a great place to mountain bike, run, hike, and during the winter, snowshoe or skate ski. As you are standing on the upper trails you have a full view of three ski resorts: Canyons Resort, Park City Mountain Resort and Deer Valley. Standing there, away from the hustle and bustle, seeing the mountain range in front of me confirmed the feeling I keep getting more and more often. I want to wake up to views like that every morning. Now, I spend as much time as I can out in nature, but for every road trip I take the thought of living in a van keeps growing on me. I can’t complain about where I live as I live in the mountains, but I don’t have that expansive view that takes your breath away nor does it ever change.
I live quite modestly in a one-bedroom condo and my furniture is from IKEA but after a clean out weekend like this it strikes me how much stuff I really have. I used to be able to pack everything into my truck and vowed to never get more than what fitted in a there. Somehow stuff accumulated. I definitely need more of a moving van than a VW van if I were to fit it all.
A little while ago I read a book called Packing Light: Thoughts on Living Life with Less Baggage by Allison Vesterfelt. She too had that restless feeling for a change in her life and in order to make that change she had to learn how to pack light. She had to choose what to get rid off and what to keep. Not only in regards to physical possessions but also personally.
“What would you do with your life if you didn’t have to worry about money?” That’s the question that starts the journey behind Packing Light. Allison’s response was that she would travel to all fifty states and write a book about it but that is not what people do. They don’t just quit their job, their responsible life and go do something like that. Which prompts her adventurous friend Sharaya to ask, “So when are we going on this road trip?” And with that, the journey towards leaving the comfort zone for the unknown, by packing light in all aspects of the journey, begins.
But where do you start? What do you get rid off? I have noticed that even though I only pack a very small bag for road trips I still don’t use everything. When I go overseas and pack a suitcase so that I have room to bring back chocolate and gifts, I still end up with a pair of pants or a shirt that never got used. Maybe I need to move into a van to truly figure out a way to live with only the bare necessities. Somehow our ancestors survived just fine living with less stuff and so will we.
Do you ever feel as if you have too much baggage? Too much stuff?