THE OPEN ROAD – Those three words stir up ideas of freedom, discovery and adventure around every corner. The opportunity to put aside your everyday worries, give in to the pull of endless adventure and to liberate yourself from a schedule tied to arbitrary hours. The open road represents a path outside of everyday life where we are no longer constrained by time or routine; you allow yourself to be taken wherever the road leads.
When we decided to take to the open road to visit the beautiful state of California for the first time we had little knowledge of what to expect or even where we would be going. With our car packed with only the basics, rock climbing gear, trail running gear and simple camping supplies, we opened Google maps and took to the road.
TIME IS IRRELEVANT – They say that time is not absolute, but relative and flexible, and nowhere is this truer than when you are traveling with no defined notion of where you “need” to be. Days shift around you only because you notice the rising and the setting of the sun. In this state of timelessness you are left with nothing but options of how you enjoy the spaces between each day and night.
Stresses start to melt away and what becomes important in your life narrows down to the basics: good food, water, shelter and lots of coffee. It was always easy to meet these needs and in fact enjoy them in a way we couldn’t if we were staying in a 5-star hotel. Sleeping in the back of the car, snuggled up in our sleeping bags we would wake up often from the brightness of the moon shining through the windows, as it inched its way across the inky night sky. I could pack my stove and dinner up to a sandy mountaintop to watch the sun set across the beautiful expanse of the desert. In the morning I could wake up to first light, open the tailgate and make a delicious cup of coffee to the sound of birds chirping and squirrels scurrying in the nearby trees.
There was no need to hurry up; life was easy. That’s the beauty of life on the road, it’s simple and you learn a lot about what is truly necessary. You learn a few things about yourself and figure out how to live as efficiently and comfortably as possible.
HERE ARE A FEW OF OUR TOP TIPS FOR LIVING WEEKS AT A TIME ON THE ROAD!
1) Organization – Whatever your chosen mode of transportation for life on the road, I can probably assume it’s smaller than your regular home. Small spaces become cluttered easily so it’s important to have a place for everything. Having an order to how you pack the car each time, ensures you won’t misplace items and keeps a feng shui to the space.
2) Keep it simple – I always pack twice. By that I mean I take out the clothes and gear I think I need for the trip and then I go through it a second time to pair it down to the mere essentials. Will it be nice to have 5 t-shirts and 5 pairs of pants while I am away? Probably, but do I really need that many items of clothes…nope. Really think about the activities you will be doing, how comfortable you want to be and how long you can get away without having to clean your clothes.
3) Eat well – Just because you are on the road doesn’t mean you have to eat poorly. Even without a cooler it’s possible to eat smart and healthy. Good To-Go meals are our go-to food for lunches and dinners. They are quick to make, taste delicious and they are easy to add fresh ingredients to. Fresh food like apples, oranges, bananas, pre-cooked chicken, avocados, bell peppers, spinach, eggs…they all hold up fairly well and add a lot of extra calories to your meals.
4) H2O – Always have water with you in reusable bottles and containers. This is good for the environment, ensures that you stay hydrated (as you always have water on hand) and best of all will save you a lot of money. It will be easier than you think to find ways to refill your water.
5) Hygiene – Baby wipes aren’t just for babies. That’s right, you won’t be showering everyday and that’s ok. It’s part of the appeal of the open road, you are forced out of your daily habits and adjust accordingly.
Credit: Ambassodors Leigh and Spring McClurg
To learn more about Leigh and Spring visit: Pebbleshoo.com