Darron Mark Photography | #VanLife: Blog #018 Over before it began

#VanLife: Blog #018 Over before it began

March 30, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

I've spent nearly a year of my life learning new skills, watching videos of countless others build out their vans (some better than others), all with the aim of doing the same with my own Iveco Daily. Sadly, it didn't get off the ground, it almost did, but it didn't.

The backstory to this was our own Talbot Autoquest 400. We sold it in May of last year because as my wife put it "You are a grumpy twat when we head away". Which was sort of true, well, completely true. It took me a few days to unwind from the countless other things I had going on, to completely switch off, so putting a family of 5 into a tin can, to drive to the other end of the country where the kids would ultimately just sit and complain about having to go anywhere, all the while draining the leisure batteries on their phones, didn't fill me with glee. By the last day, I was usually resigned to it, and sort of happy and relaxed, but then it was over, and we'd have to drive all the way back home again, where at the other end, I'd be the one left to slop out the shit from the toilet.

Role forward 3 or 4 months and the regret of selling it kicked in. The missus missed the motorhome, the weekends away, that feeling that you'd actually been on a mini-break, and it was of course, all my fault (even though I didn't want to sell the thing in the first place). So, we bought the Iveco Daily. It was meant to be a project, spend a few grand, get it all done up, and away we go, just me and her and the dogs.

However, last year we'd four international trips planned, then after all that, a Christmas to contend with, my wife was also buying a business, and things just got in the way. We'd over spent on our original budget on the Iveco, and we'd only gotten away once in it, where we found that just about everything in it didn't work. No water, no heating, no lighting, it even didn't start when we tried to leave. More money had to be pumped into just the van element, welding, brakes, this that and the other (all of which I've wrote about in this blog), and we just kept 'kicking the can down the street' as they say.

It all came to ahead when we tried to get some of those niggles fixed and it cost us a small fortune. This was gonna push the project back another two months, from what we'd agreed would be the start of it (I'm still paying off those repairs now, off the credit card). The wife had had enough.

She just wants to get away. I just wanted to get away too!

So, a loan was applied for, granted, haggling occurred, and we're now the new owners of a Fiat Benimar 600SL 4 Berth Motorhome.

We've still to sell the van, it's actually sitting in front of me now as I type this from the motorhome, as it's also my new workspace. Free from the distractions of Homelife, as sitting in the kitchen didn't help me get anything done at all. I've put the van up for sale last night, trying to be as honest as I could with what's been done, and what still needs to be done, so anyone who wants to take this on does so with full knowledge of what they're getting in to.

We're not expecting a quick sale, or an easy one, but hey, it is what it is.

Our first trip away in this new motorhome will be this evening. Nothing too far, just a local spot in Donegal called Culdaff Beach. Once I've taken a trip to Asda to get everything needed, like, just, shopping stuff. Thankfully we've most of our old items left over from the last van into this, as they were stored in the attic. The main stuff would be duvets, pillows etc. I've the fridge already on chill mode, which is something I'm going to have to become quickly used to doing myself, otherwise she might just get rid of me next time!

Anyway, time I jumped off this thread and got dressed, packed up this laptop and got my arse over to Asda in Coleraine (and then B&Q for one more Ryobi toy)!

Watch this space for new pictures and videos of our travels, as the vlogging is about to start in full swing again!


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