Why I almost bought a bus

I didn’t have a business plan, I had no idea what it takes to maintain a bus, I don’t have a commercial driver’s license, and I have no place to park a bus. There are a thousand reasons why I have no business in owning a bus. So why did I almost buy one?

It all started when we were traveling and we fell in love with the idea of running a mobile retail business after seeing the “RE: START” mall in Christchurch, New Zealand. It was intended to be a temporary mall after the terrible earthquake destroyed 80% of their downtown, but soon they realized the converted shipping containers could be permanent. We definitely saw the potential of doing the same thing in the United States.

However, the logistics always presented a problem – I’d have to buy a big truck and a crane attachment to move them around. That’s on top of the expense of converting the storage container into a suitable shop. So I kept thinking.

Breaking from the Script?

The first time I saw the new Audi commercial, I knew it should be the new identity of my site. No more following the same path as everyone else… no more making bad money decisions that keep you chained to your job. Breaking from the script – I’m all in! Oh wait, they’re telling us the way…

Mattress Moving

I’m not sure what’s more hazardous – moving a mattress without properly tying it down or living with a journalist! Well, last week I experienced a dangerous combination of both when we went to purchase a new mattress for our guest bedroom. We were literally going less than a mile and staying under 30 mph, so I wasn’t concerned about tying the mattress down – even though we had tie-downs in the car.

A few blocks into our journey, my wife told me it looked like the mattress was lifting up. I wasn’t too concerned, but I pulled into the far right lane and slowed down a bit.  Well, apparently that wasn’t enough!

“Uh, our mattress is on the street” my wife said in a calm voice that made the improbable seem unlikely.  But oh yes, I looked back in my mirror and saw our mattress on the street with cars swerving around it!  Luckily, no one wrecked into each other or ran over it as we drove around the block to come back and get it.  The mattress made it unscathed, but my reputation may not have!

Home Renovation, Part II

After three years and a total renovation to our old house in New Orleans house, there were times we said we’d never do it again. However, most of the time we realized we like doing it and felt very rewarded when it was all said and done. The financial reward also made it worthwhile as it paid for our Round the World trip!

We weren’t determined to buy a fixer upper in Dallas, but it was always a possibility. We put one offer on a house that was move in ready and two offers on houses that were pretty much full gut jobs. I cringe when I say “gut job” because Jocelyn kept calling the house we purchased one before we started renovations and I kept saying it wasn’t… but now I think she’s right!

Some of the work was obvious – we’d have to replace the electrical, redo all of the floors, and re-texture and paint all of the walls. Technically, it wasn’t a gut job because we weren’t going down to the studs, and we weren’t going to do our kitchen yet. The house didn’t look too bad in pictures, but when walking through it was obvious that major work hadn’t been done in the last fifty years.

Showering Without Hot Water

I’ve been somewhat absent from blogging as we’re currently in the middle of a move with a simultaneous renovation.  I even have a post almost complete comparing what the house looked like before and what it looks like now.  However, we’re still in serious renovation and move in mode so the post is still in progress.

In fact, it’s so bad that we’re reverting back to our time traveling the globe!  When we turned on the gas to our house when we finally moved in last week, it smelled like the whole neighborhood was filling with gas!  The gas was turned off the last six weeks while the renovations were ongoing so we didn’t really notice.

So, now we’re stuck living in a house without gas.  It doesn’t affect our cooking too much because our kitchen is still gutted, but it does affect our hot water!  We’ve been without hot water for a few days already, and we have a few days to go.

That leaves a few options – most we used while traveling – cold showers, creative showers, or no showers at all!  Cold showers really aren’t fun so after we took a couple we knew it had to change.  It reminded us mostly of our time in Nepal when we were backpacking through the Himalayan foothills and hot water was hard to find.  No showers happened occasionally while traveling, but as we’re both working now it wasn’t a good option.