Wandering Away from Shore

January 3rd, 2019 | Day 3 of Fulltime Van Living
The van, off in the distance, providing me a visual anchor as I wander farther into this new life I’m creating. January 3, 2019

I remember one time when my family had gone to the beach when I was a kid and we were living in New Jersey. My family had gone to Cape May for a day and my brothers and I were out playing in the ocean, not a care in the world, just letting our imaginary game take us anywhere we wanted to go.

At one point I looked up and saw how far away shore and my mom were (I’m sure my dad was there but in my memory, it was only my mom). The ocean was at low tide and so we just kept going farther and farther out because we could – because the water was shallow and we could touch the bottom and it seemed safe. When I looked up to scan the horizon, I had a very sudden, jolting remembrance of high tide. And the fact that low tide is temporary and its time is done, it transitions into high tide. It made me think that, at any moment, the water could turn and if my brothers and I were out as far as we were, high tide would just sweep us away, into the ocean, possibly never to be seen again.

And now as I’m walking out into the desert and away from my van, I look back towards it and have the same feeling. I’m in Nevada and there is no water within sight but I feel like this gentle, safe low tide I’ve been wading in could give way and that high tide could come and sweep me away at any moment. I don’t know that I mind necessarily, this low tide has been amiable with me so far and has allowed me a mellow kind of peace these first days I set out on my own to live this life. The safety of the van is my anchor, my home and as I take my walk-about back in her direction, I feel my face pull into a smile and my pace quicken.