Do we buy this baby and live off the land?

I think that at some point or another, we’ve all had “the dream.”

We’ve all closed our eyes and dreamed of what it would be like to leave everything behind and start fresh.

Start a new life, in a new place, surrounded by strangers who don’t know of our past sins or former glories.

The dream allows us to wonder what it would be like to be someone else; to have a new persona; to change our name.

To run away.

To escape.

To be who we were meant to be before we conformed to society’s norms and entered the rat race to reach the “American” dream.

In many cases, the realization that the American dream was really a nightmare prompted us to have a new dream.

A dream where we were free of constraints.

Free of debt.

Free of having to compete with the Joneses.

A dream where there wasn’t a picket fence in sight and where we didn’t have to mow or fertilize our lawns.

A dream where we could roam free; unburdened by responsibility, society’s expectations, and media pressure.

Yesterday afternoon, as the Significant Other and I strolled to the market, we came across this baby.

Suddenly, a dream was born.

Significant Other: “Bella, would you look at this beauty!”

Me: “Oh my goodness, it even has crocheted curtains!”

Significant Other: “We could tour all of Europe in this thing! Let’s do it. Let’s ask who it belongs to, make an offer, and buy it!”

Me: “And what money do you propose we use to finance this little project?”

Significant Other: “The one we’re bound to get from the sale of the house.”

Me: “Oh. Now we’re selling the house?”

Significant Other: “Of course, silly. How else are we going to see the world?”

Me: “I thought we were touring Europe.”

Significant Other: “I have a better idea! Let’s sell the house, buy this thing, and drive to Tuscany.”

Me: “And what will we live off when we get there?”

Significant Other: “We can live off the land.”

Me: “Live off the land like plant our own tomatoes, raise our own chickens, and sleep in hammocks strung from trees?”

Significant Other: “Yeah, something like that and besides, if that doesn’t work out we could always turn this baby into an ice cream truck.”

Me: “Italians have gelato. Why would they want to buy our ratty popsicles?”

Significant Other: “The same reason Europeans have Mediterranean cuisine and still want to eat at McDonald’s.”

Me: “We could also draw peace signs on the windows, burn incense, and sell dream catchers.”

Significant Other: “Or we could turn it into a taxi and drive villagers to the city.”

Me: “Or we could buy a couple of Ikea futons and turn it into a bed and breakfast!”

Just then, the honking of an irate driver wakes us from our reverie.

I realize that the Significant Other and I have our noses pressed against the van’s windows and a man is asking if he can be of assistance.

We sadly watch as he gets into the van and drives away.

Along with our dreams.

Just then, we spot this beauty.

I smile as I hear the Significant Other say, “Do you know where we could go in this bad boy?”

Where do your dreams take you?


64 thoughts on “Do we buy this baby and live off the land?

    1. Amber, I’m with you, lady These VW buses take off with my imagination and usually don’t return it till we’ve traveled half way around the world! :)

  1. My husband has told me horror stories about his old VW van, so I guess I would be terrified to drive that anywhere! But dreams are wonderful…..because the van would always work, and you would always be running and skipping through the fields of flowers with the SO, LOL!

    1. Georgia, lady, welcome back! I have missed you! And you are right—in our dream, the van would ALWAYS work! hee hee! Oh…if only are dreams came true all the time, friend! :)

  2. “…sell the house, buy this thing, and drive to Tuscany.”
    Well, if you did, write about it. I’d buy your book. I’m sure it would be so popular that they’d turn it into a movie. I’d go see the movie, too. :-D

    1. Laura, we are ready to welcome you with open arms here in Europe! With your beautiful fashion style, you’re going to fit right in! Have a lovely weekend, my friend! :)

  3. I love your dreams! Mine are always on a small scale. Buy the family ranch, restore it, and turn it into a world-famous dude ranch. A small dream, I know, but all mine! :)

    1. Diane, I dare say that is not a small scale dream, lady! hee hee! A world famous dude ranch–how wonderful! I love your sense of adventure and your desire to work hard because I’m certain this dream of yours is going to have you working round the clock! We should all be more like you! :)

  4. A VW Van! Whoo hoo. I had an original Bug – LOVED it. It went places others didn’t dare to go – even the back end of some ignorant woman who pulled out in front of me and froze in place. I still miss that Bug. Alpha Hubby and I were just talking about our second act – how life just keeps giving us opportunities to reinvent ourselves, create new dreams and walk in them! Dare to reimagine your life – it’s the only one you have. Can I visit you in Tuscany???

    1. Nan, you and Alpha Hubby must have wonderful dreams! Oh, I can see you both strolling down the streets of Paris, drinking coffee and eating flaky croissants! And most definitely you can visit me in Tuscany, friend! Mi casa es tu casa! My home is your home! :)

  5. I do sometimes think it would be great to sell the house with all of our stuff and take off in a little camper. If I did that, I know I’d miss my garden, so I guess I’ll stay where I am for now, but I will start thinking about a vagabond vacation. Maybe it’s time for Lola and I to take a little road trip. :)

    1. Or you could always fly off to visit Spain! Shary, think of the vino, the churros, the cafe con leche, the paella! It’s paradise and I’m certain you and Lola would really enjoy yourselves! :)

  6. LMAO Ah, Bella. You are an unsung Lothario, a Pied Piper, a Bard. I love this post. It reminds me that although we often forget it, life is pregnant with possibilities (to coin a phrase). It gives me hope in the future.

    Also? It lets me know that I am not as crazy as I think I am no matter what I say. Ha! There is no substitue for a partner who can meander down the lane of oddness with you. Laughter is a priceless thing!

    For the many laughs and insights you’ve given me (a horror of Spannx aside) I salute you.



    1. Coco, love, I have missed you like crazy! This comment made me smile from ear to ear! Hell, I’m still chuckling! And as always, you are spot on because there is no substitute for a partner who’s up for all the crazy that is me! ha! You are wise as you are funny, my friend! Welcome back! :)

    2. Hi Bella,

      I’m honored :). You remember the pork chop post? Crazy partners keep you grounded lol. Happy to be back and witness to your unfolding gems of wisdom and humor. Girls Rock!!!!


    3. Coco, girls rock indeed, sister! I do remember the pork chop post and so does the Significant Other! hee hee! I’m happy that you’re back! :)

  7. Heck yes, Bloody brilliant, and heck yes. Guess which comment goes to which car. =) And crocheted curtains? What more could a girl need? My great-grandmother willed me a wee patch of land, in the New Mexico desert. I’ve always figured I’ll end up living out of an Airstream trailer, spending my nights spotting for UFOs. Haaa!

    1. Lori, I read “wee patch of land in the New Mexico desert” and I was already dreaming of us girls sitting on lawn chairs, binoculars in hand, vino by our side, listening to the sound of whatever desert creatures hum in that part of the world, waiting…just waiting to sight a UFO! hee hee! Oh, what fun we would have! :)

  8. Bella–It’s so funny that you’re dreaming of being on the road when you just got back from your big summer trip!!!! This post has it all: nostalgia, dreaming, humor, super photos. Loved it!!!!

    1. Jann, I love that you loved this post! Thank you, my friend! And yes, would you believe I’m already dreaming of being on the road again? Nana used to call it “hormigueo,” loosely translated to “ants in your pants”! hee hee! I’m ready to go on another adventure, amica! How wonderful if you could join me! :)

  9. Hola Bella, gracias por todos tus mensages y por chequearme y perdona que no te habia contestado antes he tenido unos 9 meses muy dificiles.
    Anyaway, yes it would be nice to leave it all behind and start new life in a foreign land, and to have many possibilities laying in front of us… but for me after a few weeks of this dreamy-like state I’ll be asking: Where are the malls, where are the multi-theaters, where is the closest Puerto Rican, Dominican or Cuban restaurant and why I can’t understand anything anyone is saying?

    1. Ofelia, amiga mia, que tal? Espero que en estos momentos la vida te sonria! I have missed you, chica! Don’t worry about Latin food–there’s a Latin food restaurant in just about every corner in Europe! Which means you have no impediment to join us on our tour! I make no promise about mall stops–for you know I hate shopping–but Spanish restaurants are a sure thing! Animate, venga! :)

  10. What a delightful reverie, Bella! I think we all have dreams of chucking it all and fleeing to some place better — perhaps that’s the origin of the saying, ‘The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.’ But remember — we need to be grounded, too. To have a plot that’s just ours. To have a place to call Home. Ah, we humans are funny, aren’t we? Dogs have it so much easier!

    1. Debbie, you’re right–we do need to have a place to call our own. But every now and then, I feel the urge to venture out of the expected; to look for adventure and excitement! It must be that I’m getting old and feel the need to recapture the feelings of youth! Sigh. Roxy and the Sheltie do have it much easier, I’m afraid! :)

  11. I love this post Bella! It’s so fun to dream (understatement, of course). My dreams take me to Napa Valley and living off that wine-infused land! :) I often turn to JB and just say, can we pretend we are in Napa right now and then we talk about what life would be like there at that very moment. It’s fun to escape! And if we win the lottery, maybe we can fulfill our actual dream of retiring there one day :) Thanks for sharing!

    1. Caryn, I think Napa Valley is the perfect place for dreaming! How adorable that JP joins you in your dreams! And who knows, sometimes dreams come true, so who’s to say it’s not possible? I hope you will retire there and drink the loveliest of wines to your heart’s content! :)

  12. I love this post, Bella. It beautifully captures a feeling that is universal, particularly for those of us in this stage of our lives, having experienced 20 years or more working and wondering, is this all there is–and, what if I were to start all over? The conversation sounds so natural. That could’ve been any of us saying it. And the humor of it all shines through. Great post, great photos, my friend. Well done!

    1. Monica, I’m so happy you like the post! You should sit and listen to some of the conversations the Significant Other and I have. You would laugh like crazy! We’re a pair of characters and dreaming is what we do best! Thank you for your sweet words, lady. They bring a smile to my face! :)

  13. It sounds goods in theory but girrll, I don’t think you’re the live-on-the-road type. Folks who live in vans look like they live in vans. I’d settle for a little cottage in a small town not far from the city. I’m a country girl but I like having access to the city and being able to go to a quiet place to sleep. I’d take weekly back massages to go along with that.

    1. Totsy, you never fail to make me chuckle. “Folks who live in vans look like they live in vans.” bwhahaha! I’m still laughing about that comment! I like your dream of a small cottage not too far from the city and if it comes with massages, even better! :)

  14. How romantic…then reality sets in…what about health insurance (for Americans anyway)… what about when the car breaks down. blah blah blah…I guess that’s why it’s called ‘dreams’. My dreams take me to a beach house where I collect shells all day and make pretty things with them.

    1. Sheila, when I dream, I make sure reality doesn’t rear its ugly head. For just a few minutes, I am able to go where I want to go and forget about mundane things like health insurance–which is one of the things we spend most money on, by the way. Now that you mention the beach house, I’m closing my eyes and hearing the sound of the ocean. Ahh…how beautiful, my friend! :)

    1. Elizabeth, my mother has had your dream for decades! And like you, we all live in different continents. Thank goodness for our summer reunions in Spain! :)

  15. I’ve had *exactly* this dream.

    Things weigh you down. The stuff that it was fun to have when you were young becomes a burden. One of the home fix-up TV shows I watch occasionally has episodes on very small houses. Six hundred square feet jobs. The essentials. I could do that, live in one of those. I also am attracted to RV’s – every square inch put to use. So efficient.

    I could also do the VW micro-bus. I really could. Years ago, when those came out, our next-door neighbors went to California in one – two adults, three kids, a dog and pulling a camper. Over the Rockies. Amazing…

    But seriously, we have far too much stuff, and we worry about it too much. I takes over and drives the bus, instead of letting us do the driving (terrible pun, couldn’t resist…)

    1. Eloise, thank goodness for the probability of taking over the bus, if by force if we have to! hee hee! I applaud how you are simplifying your life and ridding yourself of clutter. I think it will be easier for you to pack and move to Italy when the time comes! Think of the fabulous Chianti we shall drink and the olive oil we will dip our crusty bread in! :)

    1. Rachel, I love how you balance out both needs of your personality! And I love how you’re hopeful of achieving your dreams someday! Good for you! I shall never relinquish my dreams. They’re what keep me hopeful regarding the future! :)

  16. I’ve always dreamed of living in an RV and travelling around the world, Bella!! Growing up the VW was always fascinating in the pictures we saw of it – so I can understand why this was so exciting for you. I’m a big dreamer. Having my own book-store/ travelling library was also high on my list a few years ago. Now I can hardly get out of the house most days ;)

    1. Corinne, my friend, even if you can’t get out of the house most days, this doesn’t prevent you from dreaming! Keep those dreams alive, lady, they make for sunnier days! Hugs!

  17. My husband and I dream of creating something big one day that everyone can benefit from. We are already thinking about what we are going to do with company and the money of course. Maybe travel the world ,You have to dream baby girl

    1. Ciaa, you’re spot on, lady, we have to dream! I’m glad you and your hubby are starting off early. It never hurts to plan, girlfriend! hee hee! :)

  18. dear lady, you know how much I like your posts, and how you make me dream and laugh!
    And now I’ve nominated you to go on with Liebster Awards and answer some questions, if you wish!
    besos & freedom

    1. Mrs. Allnut, can you be any sweeter! Your words make me very happy! I’m rushing over to your blog to see that nomination! Gracias desde el fondo de mi corazon! Besos! :)

  19. How timely this post is: I have been thinking about closing things in Singapore and hopping to another place in a year or two. (But of course, not closing my writing and reading. These two I’ll be bringing them along with me.) It’s a pity I can’t drive cos the van in your picture looks so delicious! The kind of conversation you have with your Significant Other is like cream on a pie ~ so sweet and dreamy. It’s great dreaming with someone.

    1. Claudine, as always, your comments make me grin from ear to ear. Isn’t it serendipitous that this post comes at a time when you are thinking of doing just what it says? How sweet! I think you, your books, and your belongings would look perfect in this little van! hee hee! The Significant Other has his moments. I’m happy that his sense of humor makes me giggle and in the process, keeps me young! :)

  20. I don’t even know where to start… your post triggered that many comments that want to be made.
    Let’s start with the crocheted curtains – they are awesome and just too cute!
    Also, speaking of The Significant Other’s comments about Europeans and their lifestyle: So true! (I can tell, because I am European, we do like French Cuisine, but McDonald’s sounds pretty good, too).
    Now, as to “the dream”… I have “the dream” every other week. I dream of going to the airport, randomly pick a destination and see where I end up. I have “the dream” far too often. I actually have it that many times that I can’t even bring myself to deciding where I want to go next year when I have finished my job training. Technically, I could go and get myself a job in any country I could possibly think of. But no matter where I go – I would have make a commitment in one way or another. I would have to commit to leaving my home country, I would have to commit to the visa conditions (financially, for example), I would have to commit to my decisions. My big dream is to go back to New Zealand and open a little café or wedding cake shop there. But I also want to experience other places, see other countries. What if I go to New Zealand and don’t even know what other countries I miss out? And what if I go to New Zealand and settle down, open my shop etc… – then I might never be able to go back to “the dream” again…

    1. Sabrina, that is one fantastic dream! I loved it all the from the little cake or wedding shop to your move to New Zealand! Talk about adventure! And guess what? If you moved to New Zealand, while you may never get to go back to that dream again, you will be able to visit other unfulfilled dreams! How great is that! :)

  21. I live in my dreams Bella! Without the dreams, i have no idea how I would have survived.
    It’s not always nice to come back to the reality. I was dreaming of freedom, of a new life, but sometimes it seems like the past is following me wherever i go.

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