And We’re Back…ish

11 Jan
2019

Well, hello! It’s been a while.

Where were we? Chicago. Right.

We’re not there any more. We were there a little over three years. We had hoped to pull off a bit of a gravitational slingshot maneuver — swing through the metropolis one more time before getting enough momentum to really get moving. We’ll see if we’ve pulled it off.

To recap, in late 2011 we headed out of Chicago in our minivan, prematurely expeditioning onto the open road in a way that would eventually become #vanlife on Instagram. We did that for most of 2012 before house-sitting in London, then moving to the Finger Lakes region of New York and tasting a little #vineyardlife.

That didn’t work out. We felt poor and isolated and cold. Our townhouse was really, really cold. So we moved — to somewhere colder.

Lisa got a job in Wisconsin, so we loaded up another Penske rental and headed back across the country. La Crosse, Wisconsin was a great home for about two years, but it wasn’t perfect. We made a lot of friends and met a lot of great people and found some fantastic bars, but like Goldilocks sampling another serving of porridge, it wasn’t just-right.

So Lisa lined up a transfer back to Chicago, we traded our minivan for a city car, we moved to an entirely new neighborhood, and we returned to the city we had left. While away, we’d shifted our perspective. That and being renters made it a great few years. We got to reconnect with old friends more frequently, return to our favorite spots, and discover new ones in our new neighborhood. It was great, but we knew it would be temporary.

We wanted to live in Colorado. We’ve both wanted to live in Colorado for a long time. First, my company closed their Chicago office and went remote. Then Lisa scored a remote job in late 2017. We had jobs but no commute commitments. We decided to move when our lease was up in the spring of 2018.

Lisa needs to be close to an airport, so Denver was a contender, but we both wanted to try to find something just-right. Something smaller than Chicago, but bigger than Ithaca and La Crosse. We’ve always liked Fort Collins. We passed through in 2009 on our honeymoon, then again in 2014 after a road trip to South Dakota. The third time we stepped foot in the city limits, we had already signed a lease and driven our stuff across the country.

Fort Collins has been home for about seven months now. It’s great. We work from home, drink at the Town Pump, and adventure up the Poudre.

A couple months ago, we got our new adventure vehicle — a Chevy Tahoe Z71. We’ll be able to get down any dirt road comfortably, and up slightly-sketchy trails with minimal screaming. And it’s big enough to fit a real bed in the back. Pre-Tahoe, we rented a Wrangler in Escalante and tore around the Hole-in-the-Rock area. We can’t wait to return and venture farther off the beaten path.

@katcarney‘s Suburban definitely influenced our decision to Z71-it:

And @Bound.for.Nowhere made us more comfortable with the step down in size versus a van. Check out their Tacoma.

So we’re armed with a new vehicle and living at the doorstep of adventure. More to come. We even joined Instagram.

Thumbs-up from Lisa.

Rocky IV