Five Twenty Year Olds in a Minivan

Five Twenty Year Olds in a Minivan

It happened at a time where we had grown so disillusioned with our society. After doing a bit of traveling the year after high school, Spencer and I became friends, taking refuge in the fact that we felt different than our peers.

At a time where everyone we grew up with in the suburbs was finishing up their first year at university, we were working server jobs, and taking little road trips to the mountains to hike and camp. Spencer had just come home from a long trip to New Zealand and I had attempted to hike the Appalachian Trail.


We had both promised our parents that we would take a year to think after high school and promptly return to our studies to “make something out of ourselves.” But as the time to go back to school got closer, our hearts were telling us that all the traveling we had done thus far was just the very beginning.

As the year came to a close we decided to pool our money together and buy an old minivan who we named Miranda with the intention of driving it across the country. A few friends decided to join us along the way and before we knew it there were five of us packed into the small van following the road that lead west.

We ended up traveling for three full months, zig-zagging along the country all the way up to Seattle where we eventually ran out of money. We spent most of our time in Colorado where we worked for some old hippies on their farm and helped them build an earth ship. They fed us and gave us a place to stay in exchange and we had great conversations for a couple of weeks.

We fell in love with Utah and its canyons and alien rock formations. We saw the most amazing display of stars that any of us had seen. You could see the purple and green hues of the Milky Way, and for three nights in a row we laid out for hours and watched hundreds of meteors shoot across the sky.

We dealt with a few scary breakdowns of the van and one incident where it began smoking uncontrollably because we had neglected it of oil. Not on purpose of course, we just had no idea about anything car related.

We eventually settled in California for a few months where we rented an apartment by the beach and began another chapter of our lives. We had spent all our money so we worked and played music and became even better friends.

Travel doesn’t have to be expensive and you can have amazing experiences even if you can’t afford plane tickets. All you need is to listen to the call of adventure and get out there. Buy a van, and don’t worry about where you’ll sleep or where you’ll go; there’s nice people everywhere. Just follow your heart; and if you do, I promise you’ll fall in love with your life.

Written by Sebastian Ferruzo; Images by Sebastian Ferruzo.

See more of Sebastian Ferruzo’s work on his website and Instagram.

Gotta follow Sebastian’s lead and begin that road trip across the U.S.? Denver-based Vanlife Customs outfits your van with all the bells and whistles to make #vanlife as luxurious as possible.