Saying goodbye to Vanessa

It’s been in the works since about early May. Either sell or trade her in. I already put a down payment on another VanDoIt. Things have changed since I got my VanDoIt November 2019. You can no longer get an off lease van, only new, and the wait time is about a year. I like their product and working with them. So we will end up getting our 5th van from them. Today was trade in day. Goodbye van #1, Vanessa.

Tons of memories but these come to my mind. The memories of Almie and I driving her from St. Louis Missouri after pick up to San Diego. Stopping at a Walmart to listen to offers on our town house. Driving back to the to the kids in time for Christmas. Learning how to use the van. It took us about a week to get running water. Learning how to get the right temps and humidity inside the van. Stopping by friends houses to fill up on water. Sleeping at friends driveway/streets. Navy showers. Taking the van to baseball games. Soccer games. The time we went to the Bay Area to check out USF. House sitting for Melody, Tiffany, and Kogan-Chan’s. Deciding to move to the Philippines. Deciding to sell the van, but it didn’t sell. Then to rent out the van, which was delayed because the place that was supposed to sell it didn’t winterize it causing some plumbing issues. To just a few weeks ago picking up the van from SF and parking in it SD while we did some summer fun. Then to today’s end of the road trip where Almie, Hayla, and Teren drove from SD-PHX-ALBQ to pick me at Albuquerque and the we headed to Wichita. Then the final “long drive” from Wichita to Kansas City Missouri.

Though it was only a year in the van. The family always talks about how they miss it. Safe to say both kids have expressed their desire to have their own van adventure. It definitely opened up a lot doors, closed some, allowed us to explore the thoughts of what “home“ really is, and a big one for me was a way to get into a minimalism mindset. It’s a constant struggle. The other day while I was driving from camping I had to double take, relisten multiple times and read the lyrics of the song “don’t dream it’s over” by crowded house. But I was listening to 6pence none the richer version.

Now I’m towing my car
There’s a hole in the roof
My possessions are causing me suspicion
But there’s no proof

what a year, is it over yet? i kid

so…we have been lacking in posts. the last post was a recap of 2019. shortly after that there was a volcano in the philippines. then a few months later there was the pandemic.

the gang (almie, tara, terem) are still holding strong in the cavite, phi while terence is back and forth between manila and seattle. this will continue for several years until it doesn’t.

earlier this year we also bought a house. it’s in the process of being built. pandemic slowed down construction. while we love we are staying now, it doesn’t totally feel like our home. this purchases solidifies our decision to call the land of our birth (almie and terence) our permanent home base. as hommie put it “putting down roots”.

we’ve flown by the seat of our pants most of our lives but in a thought out manner. kind of calculated chaos. but it’s worked out so far. so the last time i was home i was like we should start a business as i noticed a bike shop that i had been going to was a franchise. almie checked into franchises which lead us to cycle house. so the objective is to open a bicycle\motorcycle parts and service shop in the next 4-6 weeks. once this takes off it will eventually take over the international working.

is this a van blog? sup with the vans? a little recap. after living out of vanessa for a year in 2018, she ended up being put for sale early 2019 but dealership didn’t winterize her. she was setup to be rented spring of 19′ in san francisco till a bunch of water issues came up from dealerships mistake. we ended up buying big boy (now named chariot) at end of 2018 to downsize vans. but in that time we decided to move overseas. big boy ended being rented in 2019. i had a good experience and decided to get another van. the van i really wanted, a van do it. it arrived november 2019. wanted to rent this one out too, but the pandemic came thru. the red van was supposed to get modified with rooftop tent and cabinets inside but the pandemic. so we have 4 vans, yes 4 vans??!! 3 rent out now. the 4th should be rented sometime soon, but right now for it is good for a cot with your mountain bike inside type of camping. the van business is cool i absolutely love sharing experiences with people and they get a taste of van life, living small, and camp fires.

stay safe all. remember somebody out there cares about you. if you can’t find them, reach out to us. we can fix that.

Terence’s take on it

So we’ve been here in the Philippines for 2 weeks. It’s been surreal. It was great of my Tita to come home and meet us. She is the matriarch of the Nava family at 85. She has graciously allowed for us to stay at her condo. I appreciate her and her all the historical information she has on my family.

So what have we been doing. Pretty much going to out eat it. There is a reason why Filipinos are know of their food, cause it’s pretty damn good. Been hitting up a bunch of malls to see family, which is btw a Philippines past time. You can pretty much get all your household goods, appliances, and groceries at a mall. Along with other normal mall stuff.

I’ve also been working. I’ve been keeping a 9pm to whenever I get done hours. It will change slightly when I get back in August. Time adjustment was a little difficult cause I had to add work in there. Also the first week seemed like we were going and going. Did I say my mom is here too? She’s was going and going and of course I tagged along too.

Since the we moved into the van in 2018 my workout regime and bike riding went way down. I put on a little bit of weight. So about 2-3 weeks before our move I decided I would do a full marathon. Why? Cause I can. Haha. My buddy Joe did a full iron man in which he did his 1st full marathon. I figured if he could do it, my fat self could do too. Since then I’m sure I’ve dropped some weight with running, the heat, and the heat. Did I tell you about the heat. It’s hot and muggy I love it.

So we got here then Almie and Tara left for Greece like 5 days later. They sure have had a kick ass time. It was Tara’s graduation present as well as her 18th bday present. What sucks is their flight to and back to PHI were changed. I leave Tuesday back to Seattle at 11:30 pm and they arrive at 800pm. They were supposed to arrive in the morning. So I haven’t seen them for 11 days and won’t likely see them till late July.

Terence why in your right mind would you leave your family for a month at time? Moving to the Philippines was a choice Almie and I made for a few reasons.

1) I don’t want to live with regret. The door was open for us to move. I would hate 10-20-30 years down the road for me to say damn I wish we would have moved.

2) The cost of living here is very very low compared to the US. I want to use this time to save as much money as I can. This is part of the 8 (now 7) year plan. When I’m 50 I want to bank enough loot to be able to decide to work or not. To not have to work, but to choose it. Don’t get me wrong I LOVE my current job. They have allowed me this opportunity. The work is good and it suits me.

3) I missed growing up here. My mom made a hard choice after my birth father died. I want my kids to get a chance at “living Filipino”. For them to experience the culture, the food, the traffic <–I’ll save that for another day.

No pictures on this post because I pretty much didn’t use my phone while out because I didn’t have a load. Plus it got me to be in the moment while being out with family.

How quickly it comes and goes…

So last entry was Valentine’s Day. Almie was working in Austin Texas. That evening Uncle Butchie reached out to me on messenger asking if Tara was interested in trying out for Philippine Women National Soccer Team. I let Tara know and she started mulling it over.

The next evening we pick up Almie from the airport, along with 3/4 of our neighbors-The Cari clan. That evening we were also picking up Uncle Professor Rod flying from Hawaii.

So the days leading up to today it was decided that Tara was going to try out back home. I am saddened, because Almie will be the one going. Haha. Wishing I could go! Such an exciting moment in Tara’s soccer life. 2016 was so pivotal for my whole family. It gave Almie (twice) and Teren a chance to go home for the 1st time. Gave Tara a summer stay in the PI and to play soccer in China. Gave me a chance to go home and rekindle the longing I have had so likod ng puso ko (back of my heart) to go back to my birthplace. While we were it amazing, sadly it was quick and it came and it went.

While Uncle Rod was here I got invited to watch the Bambu show. I seen him like a long long time ago. Geologic made an appearance. This show was pretty dope. It got me to think about agendas, lyrics, political issues, and listen to some good music. Also got me to question my own meaning of being Filipino. Rod dropped knowledge about being the 1.5 generation. I guess my whole life I’ve known it but never put a label to it. Probably why I was angry when I was young. 1.5 are those that were not born here, but moved here at a young age where they didn’t experience the “whole” growing up in the Philippines. I need some self reflecting. Next day we got to see Ruby Ibarra. No words..but wow and dope.

Back to the comings and the going’s. Tara today interviews at PLU what would be potentially be a full ride. Only 5 out of 106 will get it, but to be able to be on the list is still an accomplishment. Her high school life is almost over which has blown right by and soon she will enter the college life which will come and go…in a blink of an eye.

Just want to remind you if your reading this like in that one song “we are not promised tomorrow”. So love yourself and those close to you like you going to lose them. It goes by fast…

Kindergarten, she had already been doing soccer for about 2 years at this point

Age 9. First club team try out. Made it.

2016. Age 16. Interview with Tara and team at CNN Philippines

My little dude has been going to soccer for a long time. I think this is the old little kickers building.

Lute life

Didn’t really take any pictures but this. Was enjoying th.

Dear diary…

I told my family I would start my next blog post with some dear diary shit. So it’s been a month since the last post. We’re settled in at our friends basement apartment, the Cari’s. Fuck for real it has been really really good. Their kids and our kids get along. I can’t say enough how grateful I am the universe put us here. Took a bad situation (leaking roof on van) to a place where we all feel at home. We’ve had 3 Sunday dinners in row and oh my there has been food a plenty.

A mutual friend of ours has recently received news of cancer. If it wasn’t for him introducing us a few years back on a bike ride we wouldn’t have met the Cari’s. I am thankful!! Another friend is having troubles with their marital situation. I hope and pray that these folks find peace and comfort in their situation that they are in. My take from all this is life is short, live it well.

Snowmaggedon. Seattle has been hit with an unusual weather spell. It’s almost over, it has been cold. We ate too much. Got cabin fever. But the kids had a good time playing in the snow.

The van is doing great. I have some reservations about the engine but nothing too crazy, it will get fixed. Leak is fixed. Thankful for that. We have decided to put the van up for rent.

And RVshare, but I can’t find the link right now.

Here are some pics from the month.

Karaoke at the new spot

Found a printed pic. Circa 1998

The van aka big boy at his new home.

CC and I saying good bye to 1D poster before it goes to recycling

Got to go on a longish bike ride

Started at a church open gym b-ball

The homies playing in the snow

School closure snow

Late night tour of green lake

Sending selfies to Almie while she’s on a work trip

Beating street fighter 2 on Xbox