SHOREWOOD — A Shorewood couple is in the process of selling everything they own to begin their new life on the road in an RV.
Lauren and Jonathan Gusanders are letting their lease expire June 1. That's when the couple and two dogs will embark on the trip of a lifetime across the United States for at least the next two years.
"It's a dream that we’ve always had, and with the pandemic, it really solidified in our life that if we are going to do it, we should do it now," Lauren Gusanders said.
With remote work becoming more popular during the pandemic, the couple decided to take their jobs on the road. Over the course of the past year, it has become evident people don't have to work and live in the same city. Now the Gusanders will make the entire country their office. They have cellphone signal boosters and multiple wifi hotspots to keep them connected even when they are deep in nature.
"We know there are going to be bad days, but we know there’s going to be a lot more good days. And at the end of the day, we are doing exactly what we want," Jonathan said.
The trip could last even longer if they decide to keep going. Their future is just as open as the roads are.
"The end game we - don’t know. It might be life in an RV. Or at the end of two years, it will be 'get us out of here and get us into sticks and bricks again,'" Jonathan said.
The RV is about 220 square feet. Surprisingly, it can sleep six, but it will just be the couple and their two dogs. So how will the Gusanders manage life on the road? Here's how.
- a gas stove with three burners and full oven
- one bathroom with a shower
- a refrigerator and sink
- a kitchen table that can be pushed down flush with the chairs to make a bed/couch
- storage space near the ceiling
Obviously, they won't have much stuff inside the RV, but that's the point.
"We're not trying to spend a lot of time in here, and that’s a question a lot of people ask us. 'How are you guys going to live in there? It's not a lot of space.' It's like we're going to be in the great outdoors," Jonathan said.
As to whether they are afraid they might get sick of each other: "You know people always ask me if I’m scared to share 22 feet with my husband, and I'm not. I'm really not," Lauren said.
They will hit the road north to the Upper Peninsula, but their main direction, like the settlers of the 1800s, is west. No voyage is complete without a proper name for the RV too.
“We named our RV 'Hekla', which is the most powerful, strongest, volcano in Iceland," Lauren said.
The couple took their first-ever vacation together to Iceland. It's where they decided to camp in an RV for the first time, so Iceland has a special place in their hearts.
So they will hit the open road with a few specific destinations in mind, but oh the places they’ll go.