Day 700 – Salt Lake City, UT —

I’ve been thinking a lot about this notebook lately. When I have gotten around to keeping up on it in the past, it generally is a simple summary of where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing. It rarely dives in too deep on any one subject. And that’s okay — I’m not into divulging my entire existence on the internet and spewing absurd rants across the fiberoptic cables of the world. So I’ve decided to switch gears a little moving forward to focus on a few things I feel might be more interesting to anyone that comes across this, or for those of you who are interested enough to take a moment to read about what I’m doing.

You’ll notice at the top of this post “Day 700 – Salt Lake City, UT”. Let me explain. Day 700 refers to how many days I’ve lived in a van. Yes, I live in a van. No, it is not down by the river. In January 2010 I decided that in order to pursue my goals in business, which happen to include two things I’m very passionate about: telemark skiing & music, I needed to increase my mobility and efficiency. So I purchased a 2004 Ford E-350 white cargo van with no windows. It was originally used to transport oxygen tanks in Salt Lake City. And yes I’ve heard every molester joke in the book about my white van with no windows.

The van was empty, minus a few shelves and storage boxes, that were all removed in order to convert this into a sleeping unit. My thought process behind this, is that I can live in the world and simply sleep in a van. In order to do this I needed a comfortable place where I could lay my head down, read a book, change my clothes and most importantly get from place to place. With the help of a good friend of mine, who is an incredible welding engineer, we constructed a bed frame along with a desk that doubles as a stove storage. My clothing and food reside in simple plastic bins. The kind that your mom might use to store the christmas decorations in the basement.

We insulated the walls with the pink insulation you would see in any home and covered it with a nice 1/4 inch oak paneling that we picked up at the local home depot. To cover the ceiling we used a simple spray adhesive to adhere black speaker carpet to the once cold metal ceiling. Once all of this was put together we put a queen-size mattress onto the metal frame. And voilà I had a miniature mobile home.

It’s called the NoMadsen.

I’ve spent nights sleeping in the van when it was -15 below fahrenheit to humid sticky summers in Vermont. I’ve slept in every place you can imagine: from Brooklyn, NY to the backroads of Mississippi to everywhere in between. And I’ve loved every minute of it.

So my reasoning for starting this quest to change my notebook is simple. I’m trying to take away the layers, of what an outsider may perceive, and give a more true representation of what I’m doing. I don’t want you to simply read about what I’m doing — I want you to come along for the ride.

I’m still going to use this as a platform for all of the projects that I’m working on. But I want to journal about them in a way that is true, simple and not full of bull shit. Being a new business owner is an extremely fun and intense journey, along with being a musician, writer, etc. And I’m not trying to monetarily buy my way into any of this. My objective is clear: be honest, work hard and take it slow and steady.

This adventure has always been brick by brick and mile by mile for me. Its my hope that my words from here on out can simply be a marker for which mile marker I’m at, the day I write it down.

Thanks for checking in.

— J



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