MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — From the outside, it looks like an average van. To Adam Arling and Brent Sugay, it’s a 60-square-feet escape.
“It’s the simplicity,” Brent Sugay, from St. Paul, said. “If you live in a smaller place maybe it helps make our life more simple.”
Always adventure seekers, the couple were out on a walk at a nature center last fall. Arling — tired of taking care of his house in St. Paul — had been following Instagram stories of bloggers living small on the road.
“I was looking for a way to minimize,” Arling said.
They jumped right in. They scheduled a leave from their corporate jobs, put their house on the market, and sold most of their furniture. Instead, they bought a used Sprinter van for $26,000. Their friends were mostly supportive, but the two admit their parents were skeptical.
“They thought we were crazy,” Arling said.
They gutted the van and added new hardwood floors, beds, a storage unit for books and bikes. Solar panels power their laptops.
They plan to spend the next five weeks testing out #vanlife on the road.
“We’re about to see it will be a pressure cooker for our relationship,” Sugay laughed.
Where they are headed is less certain.
“The route is out west right now and the rest is go with the flow,” Arling said.
They plan to hike, bike, and explore all that Mother Nature has to offer.
“I think you still learn and gain skills,” Sugay said. “As long as you know what you want go for it.”
Both say their bosses were supportive of their adventure–that they started Saturday. As for the plan when they come back after five weeks, they said this will be a test run if they can do smaller living more permanently in Minneapolis or if they’ll look into an apartment.