to simplify 2.0    notes from a life on the open road

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Waiting Room

It seems that no matter one's station in life, the DMV will always be inescapably linked with the act of waiting. Nobody gets off easy.

In the old days, back when I was an apartment-dwelling cityslicker, I'd arrive early, take a number, settle into one of those hard plastic chairs, and resign myself to spending a few soul-sucking hours in purgatory. These days, as a nomad with virtual residency in South Dakota, at least the waiting room is vastly improved:

It's a cozy little spot some people like to call Wyoming, and even though it lacks the pile of three year old issues of Good Housekeeping, and Univision isn't blasting away on a cracked 15 inch TV in the corner, it's otherwise a pretty nice place to pass the time.

Having set up residency in South Dakota five years ago, it's finally time to head "home" and renew my drivers license, but with temperatures still too hot down in the Mount Rushmore State, I've opted to settle in at 8500 feet up here in southern Wyoming and wait a week or so for things to cool off.

It'll probably set a new record for DMV wait times, but at least I'm the one calling the shots. Better still, I've got the whole place to myself, Verizon was considerate enough to plop a cell tower a quarter mile from my door, and anytime the need for human contact arises, the historic town of Laramie – complete with three different microbreweries by my count – is just a short drive away.

That, gentle readers, is how you do a waiting room.

Monday, August 24, 2015


Sunday, August 23, 2015


Driving north out of Denver early this afternoon, I looked over to my right and caught the Earthroamer factory whipping by. It being Sunday, the place was closed, but they had a few models outside in the lot, so I pulled off the highway to get a sense of just how much better life might be if I had a cool half million or so burning a hole in my pocket.

Which one doesn't belong?
Amazing rigs, but then, for that kind of money, I guess they should be. Duly impressed, I nonetheless drove off thinking that even if I did have that kind of scratch laying around, I'd probably hold onto most of it and instead go with something homegrown. Interesting to see how the 1% go about hitting the road though.

And speaking of seeing how others go about doing this whole living thing, I'm back in the van after several days in sweaty Florida helping Mom move. Ah, the things we do for love. There's nothing like a few solid days of packing, lifting, and loading to make a guy appreciate the merits of his radically simple life.

I shouldn't give Mom too hard of a time though – we actually fit every single thing she owns into a U-Haul not much bigger than one of those Earthroamers pictured above. How many of you conventional house dwellers out there could pull that off?

Could this nutty urge to live so ridiculously small actually be hereditary?