Ben & Marianne: It's An Open Road

IT'S AN OPEN ROAD, that stimulates all senses:

Travelling in a fourteen-seat-people mover that we have converted into our bedroom, lounge room, kitchen, computer room and garage sounds interesting, doesn’t it? Well it is! The ocean is our pool and we even have free toilets all around Australia as well. We are living and it feels bloody fantastic. We are free, we are roaming with no set plans and we are making memories that will last a lifetime.

Van life is great…once you have adapted. Sparkling white toilets, fancy two-headed showers, timed air freshners set to 15 minute intervals are things of the past, not that we are used of these luxuries in the first place. Baby wipes, public toilets and incense are way better anyway. I am not going to lie, we have stayed in caravan parks, friend's houses and even an AirB&B for two nights, so we have had the luxuries of cleaning ourselves with hot water and soap instead of sea sponges and baby wipes all the time. We have stayed on the streets, in national parks and in free camp sites along the way. The journey and possibilities are endless, it is exciting not knowing exactly where the road will take us or where we will park the van to sleep. Saying that, it did take us a while to get used to the unknown, but after realeasing the fear and worry from our minds, about if we would get a knock on the door from the police, or worse, a smashed window during the middle of the night, we feel we have adapted quite nicely.

It has definitely taken a while to adapt to doing our own washing, cooking and cleaning, but we have turned it into a positive thing. We have finally realised that parents are way better than what we originally thought... Joking. “Thanks for everything parents!” The reason why I say this is because living in a van isn’t as easy and perfect as it may look through photos. “But thats the spirit of van life!” The hard work and effort we have put into this trip make the good times even sweeter. Waking up next to my beautiful girl in our van-home, surfing in amazing locations, meeting new people, surrounding ourselves with amazing nature and wild life, easily overcome the luxury of a 15 minute-interval air freshner you could smell in a house.

Prior to this van trip, I travelled around the world for sixteen months. For the majority of my trip, I had no set travel plans or limitations on time I could spend in one place. I travelled by following the signs and the flow of where the world took me. If possible, I highly recommend this way of travelling as it has taught me so much about myself and how we need to stay in touch with the messages nature, people and the universe send us. The book Celestine Prophecy, by James Redfield, definitely assisted me to this state of mind and gave me more inspiration to travel this way. This style of travelling lead me to Marianne, my amazing lover. After discussing the idea of a van trip in Australia, we decided to do a trip up the East Coast that would flow with this “free” style of travelling. We set off from Adelaide only knowing we were sticking to the coasts of Victoria, New South Wales and eventually Queensland. All we know now, is that we have to be home by Christmas and eventually need to find some work to pay the bills we don’t have…. Until then, ITS AN OPEN ROAD. @benjermainrayner @thecreativescape