Cosmic Gypsy Nomad Life

Real Nomad Life With A Sprinkling Of Cosmic S**t

Author: Reikicoach Page 1 of 2

Nomadic Freedom: Is It Really A Thing?

If you ask a nomad why they chose this life, it’s highly likely that freedom will be high on their list of “why’s.” 

My first book even has the word in the title: Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide to NOMADIC FREEDOM In The Modern Age.

Not mine. I wish!

So, if nomads are searching for, and hopefully finding freedom, what is it exactly are we looking to be free FROM?

Yes, we’re free to roam, but it goes much deeper.

Freedom Equals Liberation.

Freedom implies liberation. To be free, we have to be liberated from a state of non-freedom.

Dictionary.com defines freedom in these terms:

  1. The state of being free, or liberty rather than confinement. 
  2. Exemption from external control, interference, regulation.
  3. The power to determine action without restraint.

As nomads, are we free from confinement, external control, interference or regulation, having the power to do anything we want without restraint?

I still need my monthly Social Security, medical insurance, mail delivery, internet, driver’s license and other life necessities. If I choose to keep those benefits, I’m not free from having to deal with the governmental organizations that administer those services. 

When I relocated to the Southwest, I spent over 6 mind-numbing weeks filling out applications, making phone calls, submitting paperwork … a freedom-stealing, soul-sucking endeavor. Just ask Nancy, who listened to me whine that entire time!

Freedom Equals Choice.

I’m still a part of this system, but it’s totally my choice in how I function  within that system. 

The more choices I have, the more freedom I feel.

I wasn’t free when I stealth parked in California … and at 7:30 AM got the dreaded knock from law enforcement. Unbeknownst to us, the area we’d been stealth parking in for 3 weeks had just exploded into a hotbed of debate involving nomads, locals, and authorities. Although there was no specific state, town or county code that made us illegal, (believe me we researched it) when the authorities show up and ask you to move on, you move. My freedom to park on that street ended at that moment. 

Unfortunately, as nomads, we’re labeled as homeless, and the current political/social climate is not friendly towards us. It’s worth paying attention to these trends and have a backup plan to keep our freedom, in case we do get the boot!

To be free isn’t just a physical state.

Freedom Is A FEELING.

I’ve claimed personal freedom to define my life according to what makes me feel the happiest, fulfilled, and whole.

We feel the freest when we’re living from our essential self. Personally, living as a nomad and a minimalist has allowed me to live closest to the authentic being that I wish to be.

Financial Freedom.

Instead of paying extortion money to a utility company for the privilege of staying warm in the cold Northeastern winters, out in the Southwest I follow the sun, run the car heater before bed, cuddle with Nancy or my hot water bottle, and have lots of blankets. 

Living in the Northeast, I struggled every winter to keep up with the heating bills, and was threatened more than once with a shut off. 

Gaining my freedom from THAT BS involved a happy dance, and possibly a rude finger gesture when I paid my last bill!

When I left my cute little apartment two years ago to hit the road, my landlord hadn’t raised the rent in 8 years, and it was already a bargain. Now I can’t afford an apartment, but I have gas money to travel!

Freedom Of Self-Actualization.

We’re free when we’re empowered to live our lives in a way that brings us the most happiness and autonomy, while not impinging on another’s own personal freedom. Tricky, that!

As a nomad, you have freedom to create your own life and redefine what’s important to you.

As you reinvent yourself, you find yourself … this is the very heart of the nomadic movement. Every nomad I’ve met has his/her own unique way of BEING a nomad. There is no cookie cutter mold for us!

Freedom Of Time.

Not having many possessions or huge living spaces frees us from the time maintaining it all.

We learn to meet our needs in a hands-on way, which shapes the quality of our lives as nomads. I can’t just flick a switch and hope to pay the utility bill once a month to have lights and heat.

As nomads we still have tasks and chores to be done to keep us sane and healthy, yet now our energy goes to more directly supporting our own lives.

Freedom Is Relative!

So many of us feel it in our bones that there must be more to life than the “traditional” way we’ve been living. We crave the liberation of our most authentic selves, and realize that life is too short to spend in misery.

We know that life experiences are more important to us than stuff, and nomadism offers us an opportunity for more conscious, meaningful living.

When it’s all said and done, and I think I speak for many nomads … I FEEL FREE!


Some excerpts from: Telesha, Mary Ellen. Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide To Nomadic Freedom In The Modern Age (pp. 166-167). Kindle Edition.

GUYS, This Is For You. (RANT!)

THIS ONE’S FOR YOU GUYS.

It’s Tuesday 10/29/19, approximately 12:30 PM. 

Nancy and I are outside in our campsite, I’m on “my side” of the camp walking towards my van, and she’s standing near her van. She motions for me to look, there’s a man, slowly walking, coming into our camp.

I’ve seen him twice before, walking right through our campsite between our two vehicles. I stop and stand there watching him, so he knows I’m watching him. When he gets close enough to us I say “what’s up?” 

He says something like, that’s the way to do it, have two campsites …commenting on the way Nancy and I have a big camp spread out with our vans across a wide area. 

I say, “yes, and you’re walking right though it.”

He says something about that not being ok, and I say awkwardly “It is kind of weird.” Duh. So awkward.

Then he gets defensive. 

Not apologetic, or understanding how we might feel frightened by a strange man walking through our campsite unannounced … nope, he’s mad.

He berates me, saying “You know people can park right up 15 feet from your bumper,” (rules in this area) implying I shouldn’t have any boundaries with people just walking through the campsite.

Then he says … “ok, another one,” dismissing me in a very derogatory way. Hmmm. Another one? Must be he’s been called out on this before.

Implying it’s not ok to have boundaries, I’m a just another bitch.

I should have said, “Another one what??? Another woman that has boundaries with you???”

He just took me off guard and I was pretty speechless. What I really wish I would have said is, “My understanding is that it’s proper etiquette to ask permission to enter someone’s campsite.” Period. 

This is the third time he’s walked right through our site, and he’s obviously aware Nancy and I are together. The first two times I was in my van and watched him slowly walk through between our two vans, picking up things from the ground. 

This time we happened to both be outside. 

This One’s For You Guys.

Ask any woman who’s spent time on the road, and she will have multiple occasions and variations of this scenario she will relate to you. I’ve been on the road two years now, and it’s excruciatingly common. Most of the time I don’t say anything … and THIS IS EXACTLY WHY. So now I’ve ticked someone off within walking distance of our campsite, and it’s a very vulnerable feeling. 

Men repeatedly walk into our campsite without permission, ignoring the well-know etiquette to ASK PERMISSION.

You wouldn’t walk right into someones home without knocking would you? Especially if you are a perfect STRANGER to those people? How would THAT play out? 

Have a frying pan and know how to use it!

Well, that’s how we feel when men walk right into our camp unannounced without permission. And when we DO ask that it not happen, this is the reaction we risk having to deal with.

And as a couple, Nancy and I have had men repeatedly walk into our campsites without permission. It’s not just solo women that have this problem.

This One’s For You Guys.

Last year, a man camped near us in Quartzsite, changed his Facebook profile to present as a woman, and got himself into the Women’s Only WRTR Forum on Facebook. (WRTR = Woman’s Rubber Tramp Rendezvous.)

He was caught online. It was disturbing, as he was camped just across the wash from us in Quartzsite. He’d made the mistake of having identifying pictures up of himself, and his very distinctive rig, before he changed his profile pic and ID to a female on Facebook. He didn’t even create a different profile, just changed his current one. Not too smart. 

He’d said something in another forum (posting as himself, as a male) about the “Women’s LGBT” group, (confusing that with the WRTR) that had set off red flags with me, and I’d looked at his profile and taken a screenshot. Within an hour he’d changed his profile to female, and when I showed my partner Nancy, she recognized him and his rig and said he’s camped near us! The timing was uncanny. Moderators were contacted and he was booted from the Facebook group. But still, he remained camped near us. So you just never know.

This One’s For You Guys.

So yep, I’m going to question if I see something that might be a boundary being violated. I recently saw a man posting on the Women’s Only Forum on the CheapRVLiving website, and I questioned it. Turns out it was innocent, there are ways to look at posts that don’t make it clear it’s the Women’s Only Forum, which I didn’t realize. It sure did set a few people off, but not with the poster. They were ticked with me.

Having a laugh at ourselves 🙂

I don’t want to hurt anyones feelings. In fact I just had a fantastic in person conversation with a another man about nomadism, single men and women, and what did I think was going on with all these single people on the road. He was genuinely curious about why so many relationships were breaking up, including his, but he was very respectful and not pushy. He struck up a conversation with me at the dumpsters, but not until I gave him a friendly hello and how are you. 

GUYS, we are VULNERABLE. As full-timers we are living outside, with very little privacy, and for obvious reasons, we have to be alert and careful. PLEASE, be aware of our feeling of vulnerability when you approach us, and understand WE ARE GOING TO BE ON THE DEFENSIVE if you’re entering our “home” without asking permission!

Roswell, Aliens, X-files, Oh My! (Our Cross Country Trip)

So, Nancy and I were just hanging around in Flagstaff, AZ this past June when she said to me, completely out of the blue, “Hey let’s take a trip back to the East Coast!” 

Ummmm … OK!

Since we both have family back in NY state that we hadn’t seen in way too long, I was on board. After crunching numbers, we had to beg, borrow and steal (well, maybe not steal) and after a visit to the pawn shop off we went! 

Before we knew it it was the end of the short Northeast summer and time to head back to the warm desert.

Now we had make the trip BACK across the country, over 2600 longggg miles, to the warm desert we craved.

Pete: “Are We There Yet???”

When we finally hit Arizona, after 13 days on the road, 2600 plus miles and 40 plus hours of drive time, we were befuddled and exhausted from the 13 days of driving and living in truck stops, it was HOT, and our favorite spot on the LTVA was already taken.

To top it off, what should have been the last 10 minutes of our epic journey had ended in a torturous hour stuck in a major slowdown in the i10. No big deal … unless your backside feels permanently numb from sitting in the drivers seat for 13 days and your destination is jussttt with reach.

It was one of those “questioning my life choices”moments that thankfully quickly passed. For a drive that took 13 days and 2600 plus miles, we rocked it!

We’re not newbies, this will be our third season on the Sonoran desert, but it’s been a minute. We’d spent the summer on the cool Northeast coast, still living out of our vans, but spoiled by our respective  families with inside showers, lots of home cooked meals, and a roof when the weather got challenging. Now we were faced with getting back to the rigors of nomadic living on the desert!

Our Trip Went Something Like This:

Day 1. Leaving family behind again. Tears and excitement. First stop, Cicero, NY.

Day 2. Yay I’m on the road again! This is a great life! Erie, PA.

East Coast Rainy Start

Day 3. Melancholy. Walked into a Walmart in Ohio and realized no one knew me there. London, OH.

Day 4. Starting to wake up dazed and wondering where the hell I am. Terre Haute, IN.

Day 5. Celebrating! We’re a little ahead of schedule! 5:30PM and we’re both in our jammies and ready for bed. Pacific, MO.

Day 6. Working the traveling zone. Sleep, wake up, coffee, drive, repeat. Joplin, MO.

Day 7. Feeling good, we push another hour to make it a four hour day. Hinton, OK.

Day 8. BORING. Tedious. Unending stretches of farmland and only two radio stations and zero NPR. Tired. Amarillo, TX. 

Day 9. Caught in the COLD! We find a cheap but clean hotel room in Santa Rosa, NM. 

Cue X-files Theme

Day 10. Roswell! Aliens! X-files! Oh my! Roswell, NM.

Day 11. Where am I? Who am I? What am I doing? NEVER AGAIN WILL I DEPEND ON MCDONALD’S COFFEE FOR CAFFEINE. We had to stop and find real coffee. Las Cruces, NM.

Day 12. Slept great. Back to warm temps. Tucson, AZ. 

Day 13. Destination! QUARTZSITE! Arriving befuddled! Exhausted! Confused! Grateful!

Here Are Some Of The Highlights:

We made the cross country trip on Pilot truckstop’s organic sumatra coffee with 2 shots of stok (espresso shot creamers)  every morning … oh and our love and support of each other of course! 

We stayed at truck stops the entire trip, aside from the one motel room in New Mexico to get out of the freak cold front. Don’t get me wrong, we can do the cold, but it drains the life force out of you like you wouldn’t believe.  

In Tucson, we came across the friendliest Pilot truck stop of the whole trip. The two ladies working there were welcoming and cheerful, with a wicked sense of humor. They put a plastic spider in the bananas and scared the s**t out of Nancy!

In the Hinton OK Pilate we saw 6 skinny feral cats living off handouts in the parking lot. So sad! Nancy fed and watered them and I contacted the local animal shelter.

My first time in a CASINO! Sugar Creek Casino, Hinton OK. I played a dollah, lost a dollah, Nancy played a dollah and won 45$!

Nancy Winning!

All of the Pilot/Flying J truck stops we slept in were welcoming to nomads. As far as truck stop etiquette, we never take the trucker’s spots, and never leave behind garbage or any other questionable waste. 

Nancy’s Calendar: All Of Our Stops

Some parking lots are noisier than others, especially if the car parking is right next to the trucks! At times you’re unsure if you’re still vibrating from being on the road, or if it’s the ground shaking from all the idling semi’s!

Finding Much Needed Peace On The Road

There are traffic jams, rough roads, rude drivers and aggressive truckers. The monotony of doing nothing but driving every day can be mind numbing. We both drive our own vehicles so there’s no one to talk to. 

The Long Road To Roswell, NM

Our driving times was only between 3 and 4 hours a day. Neither one of us is up to long stretches, c’mon, we’re old ladies! (and one of us struggles with chronic illness.) By the time we got on the road, made the necessary pee stops, walk the dog stops, or food stops, it was pretty much a six hour day. We were both excited to make a side trip to Roswell!

Friends In Roswell, NM

Now we’re happily settling in at Quartzsite, waiting out the heat, getting some rest, organizing and preparing for our next nomadic adventure …. San Diego here we come!

Why Are Some People So Jealous Of Nomads?

Since the beginning of my nomadic journey I’ve heard these words over and over again:

 “I’m So Jealous!” 

In the beginning, when someone said that to me I would laugh hysterically (internally of course) and think, “OH HONEY, if you only knew!” 

There Are Times Of Misery In the Life Of A Nomad That Are Nothing To Be Jealous Of, Believe Me.

Life of Leisure?

I’m sure people envision us wallowing in leisure, with unending days of blissful relaxation, freedom to do whatever we want, and no responsibilities dragging us down. To be honest that’s exactly what I had in mind too, before I hit the road. I hate to spoil the fantasy … and while I do have an amazing life … it’s not a realistic picture.

It was rough in the beginning. I was exhausted, disoriented, and my mental health took an unexpected dive. Even after the “big purge,” I still had too much crap to keep organized. It was all driving me a little crazy! (Read more in Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide To Nomadic Freedom In The Modern Age.)

Speaking of crap, the porta-potti I thought would be similar to the “house throne” turned into a craptastic nightmare. At only two gallons, it was small enough to be emptied into any toilet, but the pour had to be skillfully controlled, or risk an explosion of two gallons of digested waste all over the bathroom. It was a weekly challenge to find a place to dump it —  by either awkwardly carrying a 2 gallon container of liquified poop into a public bathroom — or finding a dump station to pour it into a hole in the ground where other people have splashed THEIR liquified poop. Dealing with a slurry of your own waste … ewwwww.

Snowstorm. Spring 2019 Williams, AZ

Then, there’s exposure to the elements 24/7  — dust storms, thunderstorms, monsoons, and for extra ha-ha’s this year, a snow storm. One summer we made a rookie mistake and drove into 110 degree weather … utter, complete misery in a mini-van. Most free areas require campers to relocate every 14 days, and you better believe Nancy and I compulsively check the forecast before we move on.

And the critters! They’re constant company everywhere, from food-stealing bees to pissed off rattlesnakes. See more → Critters On The Road.

Plans frequently fall through — you arrive and the campsite is closed, travel schedules get screwed up by unforeseen events, a crazy neighbor forces you to leave a perfect spot, or you get an early morning knock from the authorities in an area previously friendly to nomads.

There’s household chores without running water, safety issues, getting sick or injured on the road, vehicle problems … the list goes on.

Some Days You’re Doing Your Best Just To Stay Sane!

So why the heck are we doing it, and just what is it that people are jealous of???

Most of Us Know, Consciously or Not, That Human Beings are not Meant to Live the Grinding Monotony of Work, Consume, Sleep … Then Repeat … Until We Die.

In The Healing Power of Nomadism, I explore the positive effects of travel —  partly what people are craving — but I think it goes even deeper.

I believe people are feeling some undefined yearning for freedom … for human freedom that our civilized, capitalistic society has convinced us to trade in for the trap of security. Freedom is relative, I still have to pay bills and be a responsible citizen, but I do feel intense freedom as a nomad. It’s personal freedom defined only by myself.

When I hear, “I’m so jealous,” inevitably the next words are, “I don’t think I could do it.”

Of course, the financial aspect of being on the road has to be considered — but mostly I hear people express fear of discomfort — of making a mistake, of giving up possessions, of leaving the familiar. We pay a price for trading in authentic living for the illusion of security, trading in wonder for fear.

The Ecstasy Outweighs The Agony!

Personally, the wonder I get to experience outweighs any discomfort. I’ve felt rushes of absolute freedom and joy on the road, seeing the world as I’ve never seen it, standing on an ocean beach far from my home of origin, with frothy waves rolling over my feet, the sun and sky and cries of seagulls filling my senses. I’ve had my mind blown as I look down from a high mountain peak on a psychedelic orange sunset, and met fellow nomads who inspire and encourage me just when I need it.

On a purely physical level, I’ve learned to create my own version of comfort. My health is better living close to nature — I even sleep more soundly in my van, after a lifetime of insomnia.

I couldn’t agree more with these words from the French philosopher Albert Camus:

The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.


Some material taken from Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide To Nomadic Freedom In The Modern Age. Kindle Edition. © 2018 Mary Ellen Telesha

The Healing Power Of Nomadism

When was your last hit of dopamine? If you’ve recently experienced pleasure or satisfaction, more than likely a sweet dose of dopamine was involved.

This summer I spent a few months living in my family’s backyard, my van parked on a beautiful tree-ringed spot on the banks of the Mettowee River. 

I LOVED being back east spending time with my family, but I noticed when I was in the house too long, I start feeling flat. I fell into old habits of binge-playing video games, compulsively checking email and Facebook. I was jonesing for my next hit of dopamine.

The neurotransmitter dopamine involves good stuff — pleasure, satisfaction and goal setting — but unfortunately, our brain doesn’t care how we get our next hit.

Addictions to drugs, alcohol, porn, shopping, food, or even browsing the internet are poor but effective substitutes for increasing our feel-good neurotransmitters. It’s not rocket science to see that the Western capitalistic way of life isn’t promoting human health … but that’s a story for another day.

Nature As Medicine

Living outdoors as a nomad, nature enraptures me with ever-changing scenery, the constant parade of life, subtle transformations of light, sun and clouds — and my brain responds to this sensuality with a beautiful orchestra of chemicals and brain waves.

"Researchers have found as little as five minutes outdoors in a natural setting can improve mood, increase motivation and boost self esteem. Even a brief walk in the park can improve your well-being.” — Ten Ways To Boost Dopamine And Serotonin Naturally.

Feelin’ Good As A Nomad

Goal Achievement:

From converting our vehicles, traveling to beautiful destinations, to the daily maintenance of nomad life, goals are inherent in the nomadic lifestyle!

“When we achieve one of our goals, our brain releases dopamine. The brain finds this dopamine rush very rewarding. It seeks out more dopamine by working toward another goal. This pattern keeps a steady release of dopamine in your brain.”

Happy Memories:

When I look back on memories of the last two years as a nomad, I’m amazed at the amount of wonderful experiences I now treasure! 

“Researchers have examined the interaction between mood and memory. People dwelling on happy memories produced more serotonin.”

Novelty:

As a nomad, I’m treated to the unending novelty of new roads, new views, new humans!

"The brain reacts to novel experiences by releasing dopamine. You can naturally increase your dopamine by seeking out new experiences. Any kind of experience will work.” 

The Healing Power Of The Earth

Living as a nomad, I naturally experience “Earthing.” 

“Emerging evidence shows that contact with the Earth—may be a simple, natural, and yet profoundly effective environmental strategy against chronic stress, ANS dysfunction, inflammation, pain, poor sleep …” — Earthing: Health Implications of Reconnecting the Human Body to the Earth's Surface Electrons

Nomads benefit immensely from fresh air, sunlight and exposure to natural spaces, with fewer EMFs, off-gassing, indoor pollution and screen time. (What are EMFs? Read here.)

Nomadism As A Path To Awakening

  • Nomads become proficient at self-sufficiency, self-knowledge, and self-dependency. As a nomad I’ve grown into deeper self-acceptance, and realize how much I’m still capable of.
  • Because there’s less distraction from our inner selves, nomadism is a perfect opportunity to get in touch with issues that may have been on the back burner.
  • As we travel, we’re exposed to a broader perspective on humanity, meeting fellow humans outside of our narrow birth clan.
  • Our personal life-force is given a chance to awaken when we’re not numbed out by traditional, tedious routines.
  • We develop a wider view, and deeper appreciation of Earth, our original home.
  • We have stunning revelations of how little we really need to thrive. We’re free to experience LIFE when the pursuit and maintenance of possessions isn’t stealing our time, money, effort and energy.
  • We find our tribe on the road. We replace co-dependency with inter-dependency. With such a diverse population of nomads now connected with modern technology, there’s a place for all of us!

Learning To Live Without,

We Invite In The Richness Of Life

Nomad life isn’t perfect, but I’ve seen vistas of soul-moving beauty I would’ve never experienced sitting around in my old apartment. I’ve met astounding and inspiring humans, and after living happily single for many years, even met my life-partner Nancy on the desert.

Now, even when I’m struggling, I feel ALIVE. I’m out there experiencing the world. I am FREE!


You can read more about nomadism, ups and downs, fears and successes, in the book I wrote my first year on the road: Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide To Nomadic Freedom In The Modern Age.

For a more humorous take on the nomad life, my second book: Top Ten Lists For Nomads: The (Mostly) Lighter Side Of Nomadic Life

Dirty Nomads??

One of the most common misconceptions about nomads is that we’re disgusting. We’re filthy dirty, we don’t believe in showers, we stink. I’m here to bash those rumors!

I’ve been on the road for two years, and I have never, EVER, met a stinky nomad. (Hmmm, maybe I’m the stinky nomad?)

So, if we go without showers or running water in our homes on wheels, how DO we stay clean?

Staying Hygienic Is Surprisingly Easy.

First of all, let me assure you, we’re no dummies. For the most part, we’re an educated bunch, aware of the necessity of hygiene, and the importance of preventing the spread of nasty bugs. We don’t live in the dark ages.

Believe me, nomads have this stuff down. We know all the tricks to avoid smelling like Sasquatch, even when we’re out in the wilderness without access to a traditional shower.

Water is water and soap is soap, no matter how you rub it. You just have to make sure to wash — and rinse well — all the places — on a regular basis.

When there’s no pay showers available, or we want to save some $$, Nancy and I improvise with an outdoor shower. There is nothing like your own private outdoor shower — the sweet vulnerability of being exposed to sky and sun, the cooling breeze on your bare skin — I LOVE the feeling of getting clean in the outdoors!

DIY Showers.

One of our showers was one Nancy made out of PVC pipe and clipped-on tarps, but not only was it was awkward to set up and take down, it was a bitch to store in a tiny van.

PVC shower. Too awkward.

My earliest nomadic shower was a fancy battery-operated shower, a collapsible water bucket, and a shower tent bought on Amazon. I thought it’d be closest to a “real” shower, but the shower pump had to be completely submerged in the bucket to work, you had to fiddle with it to keep it completely covered as the water diminished, and you couldn’t pump out that last bit of water. As for the shower tent, it didn’t hold up well and went in the trash the first year out.

Quick Fact: Nomads use about 1% of the water usage of an average home!

The shower pump wasted reserves of precious water, just like a regular shower, and yep, it had a power button to turn it off and on, but you had to mess with it while you were all naked and soapy! There was some assembly required, with several parts to keep track of when not in use. It just didn’t fit my goal of keeping things simple, and I gave it away my first year at the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous. (You can read about my experience at this huge nomadic gathering in Wild Women On The Road: A Women’s Guide To Nomadic Freedom In The Modern Age.)

Bucket and fancy shower pump, now gone.

The best DIY shower so far has been the simplest — a rope tied around three trees, clothespins, and tarps. It’s the quickest shower set up we’ve done and it’s a winner! Heat water on the stove, or in a gallon jug in the sun for a few hours, pour it and scrub away. The flow of water is easily controlled by skillful pouring, and we get squeaky clean with about a gallon of water each. And if there are no trees, we just clip tarps to the screen shelter.

Shower happiness with Nancy!

Get Clean And Odor Free Without Running Water!

Some of these are easily done in even in small spaces like inside a van:

Spray bottles — a nomadic essential
Ivation Shower Pump
(not an affiliate link)
  • Pay for a shower: Truck stops/gyms/aqua-centers/select laundromats
  • Public showers: Beaches/community shelters/parks
  • Campsites and RV parks offering paid public showers
  • Dry shampoo
  • Body wash wipes
  • Baby wipes
  • Outdoor shower
  • Solar Shower
  • Shower Pump
  • Sponge bath/bucket of water
  • Witch Hazel
  • Alcohol
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Jump in a lake, river, pond, creek — just use eco-friendly cleanser
  • Cleansing foam — Doesn’t need to be rinsed
  • Friend or family’s house shower
  • Pump action garden sprayers
  • Spray bottles with soap, water, or cleanser of choice
  • In a pinch — Paper towels, soap and water

Aren’t Daily Showers Necessary For Hygiene?

According to the science-y people, staying clean and odor free doesn’t require daily showering! Maybe our obsession with a sterile, odorless body isn’t as healthy as we think!

Also, would you also be surprised to learn that there’s a microbe in the soil that affects us like an anti-depressant? Whhaat? Now science has even proven that a little dirt Makes You Happy!

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