We're gearing up for our 5th annual Syncro Solstice--the Vanagon meetup out in the deserts of Moab, UT that we religiously attend every year. We've kicked it with these fellow Westy aficionados every year since the event was founded, which really just means this whole thing is the highlight of my existence. This year we put wood floors in Lady Starship and gussied her up with some new (to her) front seats fresh from the junk yard.
My van has been giving me life these past couple of months. She sat neglected in level 2 of our parking garage bunker since we moved here 8 months ago. And it wasn't until about a month ago that we busted her out, gave her a stern washing, and let her loose on the streets again after her bout of solitary confinement. If you want to get deep about it (you probably don't) you could say me unintentionally locking her up like that coincided nicely with the absolute clusterfuck my brain's been throwing since moving here.
The van (Lady Starship) has always represented this wild dream I've had for as long as I can remember. I always wanted a Vanagon, and when we got hitched, she was our top priority. We didn't want a house or smelly kids--we wanted a Westfalia. And we made it happen. We went to Provo, UT, bought if from a dude that lived in it, inherited the smoke detector, bear spray, and "get off your hippie ass and get a job" bumper sticker he had in there, and just DID IT. And the thing is--we don't often make things like that happen. We're mostly just 28-year-old 88-year-olds that are too scared to get.shit.done. Except Lady Starship. She's this magical manifestation of the one time we actually dreamt some shit up and did the doing.
We DID make Seattle happen. Which was wild. And in the chaos of doing that doing--we let Lady Starship waste away for a minute as other things took priority. New jobs and new street names and new bills and friends and fears and worries and alleyway aromas. And in the chaos of the doing and the figuring--I forgot that I was capable. Every day brought something new and scary and uncomfortable, which all piled up into the shame of "I CAN'T DO ANYTHING" because no matter what I just felt like an idiot and painfully aware of how out of place I felt.
But then there was Lady Starship. We took her out, dusted her off, embraced her fondly, and I kinda started to recall what it felt to feel normal. And myself. And in a way--confident. Lady Starship is my dream child and proof that I have something to call my own. She's my little (big) freedom vessel, and when we take her out and pop that sassy top--I do what Latrice Royale calls the five g's: good god get a grip girl. Because if this 5,000 pound vehicle straight out of 1984 can still run and look good doing it, I can get my shit together and continue to make things happen.
With that, I'm kicking off Syncro Solstice 2015 with some throwbacks from past events. It never disappoints, and this year--making a triumphant return to our home state--should be the best one yet.