Posted by jeff | Posted in Bringing Back The Hobo, Winnebago Experience | Posted on 25-05-2010
It is with a great sense of excitement and joy that I write this post, but there is also a great sense of sadness and a heavy heart that I bring to you today.
I’ve been living in a 1973 Winnebago motorhome since January of 2006. Before that, I was living in my tent, bouncing around different campgrounds for three months. I’ve lived on the streets of Van Nuys, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Silverlake, Venice, Playa del Rey, Santa Monica, Culver City, Marina del Rey; I’ve been in campgrounds, wildlife preserves, abandoned neighborhoods, good neighborhoods and bad. I’ve lived in friend’s driveways, rented parking spaces. I’ve dumped my tanks up and down the CA coast (in legal dump stations). I’ve been ticketed, towed, given angry notes, had poop stuck onto my deadbolt, windshield smashed, eggs thrown at me. I’ve had cops knock at 10am and 4am. I’ve made coffee shops my office of choice. I’ve showered in more places than most people do in their lives. I’ve sold or given away most of my material possessions. I’ve been able to choose which jobs I’ve taken rather than having to take whatever comes my way simply to pay bills. I’ve paid off all debts. I’ve saved a ton of money. I’ve met some interesting and amazing people. I’ve grown a small company out of a tiny motorhome into one that will now span two cities.
All of these things I’ve done, Dick has stood there by my side. When the rain was coming down and tarps had to be put on at 3a, it was an adventure. When I was on detox with Vern and had to poo at 3a and my car wouldn’t start…I almost drove my home to a store. When we ran out of gas on the freeway, we pushed our house across 6 lanes of traffic to get to a gas station. When our friend Kevin Carpenter came to visit, we sat on the roof, smoking cigars and drinking whiskey…on the side of the road.
So many memories have been made because four and a half years ago Vern and I decided to buy a 24 foot box in which to live. My life has been permanently altered because of my experiences here. And for that, I’ll be forever grateful.
And thus, the heavy heart. I’ve taken a new job, a big job. For the next year and a half, I’ll be working on a Disney film with some guys from Pixar. In Berkeley, CA. And thus, the great excitement. We’re moving. But Dick, must stay. We deliberated for days and days about what to do and where to live once we get there. I looked at campgrounds. I looked at renting places to park the Winnebago. I looked at the weather. And ultimately, it’s that which defeated us. Southern California is perfectly suited to life in an RV. Weather is fairly consistent here, the same cannot be said for the north. Temperature fluctuations are much greater and it rains much more often. I’ve patched up and continue to work on better solutions for Dick’s leaks, but I’ve yet to been able to fix it.
And so, I’m moving out of the motorhome. On June 19, 2010, I’ll spend my last night in the place that’s been called home for the last four and a half years. I’ve lived there longer than any place in my life, except the home where I grew up. I’m saddened just writing this post. This is as real as I’ve allowed it to be for me thus far.
I’ll miss the Winnebago. It’s a 24 ft haven. A safe place, a comfortable place. A place I’ve come to love living. A place I’ll miss living.
Thank you, Dick. You will always be a part of my life.
(If you’re reading this and interested in carrying this hobo torch, please email me at email@example.com. I’d love to pass on this life to someone else, who would appreciate it and grow as much as I have.)