What are you selling when you’re selling a notoriously unreliable, unpredictable vehicle?
In 2007 we had the conversation: We need a vehicle that we can live in while we tour for a year with my film Seeing through the Fence and our band Beloved Binge. Something we can take into the city but also camp in. What better than a classic VW camper van? We, like many we’ve come to meet over the years, were fascinated with the Westfalia.
The top “pops”!
The kitchen cooks!
The chair swivels for the mustachioed man!
Room for our gear in back, with room to spare in the cab, or fit in the cab!
Our neighbor at the time helped us test drive and fix the van when we bought it in North Carolina. Another neighbor took our tour photo above. The next step was a name for the new member of our family. Between Greco the lady cat, Syba the dog, Tercy my car, and myself, there were sufficient females in our family, and this Westfalia camper van is a “he,” Rob declared.
In September 2008, we set off for our almost year-long tour.
Spoiler alert: we broke down about four times.
The following are classic breakdowns from that and subsequent trips.
But thank goodness for sites like Samba, GoWesty, and the network of VW enthusiasts who offer (for free) a place for you to park/camp while they help you get your VW repaired.
How many miles does Weston have? It’s not polite to ask after a certain age/odometer reading. Let’s just say: Weston has been around
Or, more accurately, his odometer has never worked during our watch. Weston is eternal.
How is Weston’s gas mileage?
He’s no Prius. Let’s just say our plant-based diet slightly offset our journey.
Weston is not a fair-weather friend.
Weston has enjoyed all kinds of weather extremes,though he’ll tell you he doesn’t like high altitudes by sputtering. He needs an attitude adjustment in those places, which is easily done by VW mechanics.
Reason we were often called the Scooby Doo Van
A big part of Weston was including our Husky-Shepherd Syba. Though she “hated” him, she seemed to have a good time during the many hikes, bars, and social stops. After many trips in Weston to new places and people, no one can say that she isn’t socialized. Now approaching 17 years old, we think her Weston days are over.
Sometimes the dog bed was in the cab
But never in the upstairs bunk!
Boo-Boos (not to be confused with Boo)
Weston is adjusting to city life, first in Harlem for a year, and now in Philly. He’s got a few minor rust spots, dings, and dents to keep him from Best in Show.
Have we mentioned the good times?
Weston makes a great backdrop. Here, he features prominently at our 2016 release of #Comments while I’m Your Band performs, Rob in the center.