Pro&Cons Vanlife in London

Hello everyone, hope you are having a good week.
This time I want to share with you some pro and cons that I found by living in the van in London. It is a while now from when I started van life and I decided to put together for you some of my experiences.
If you don’t like to read and you prefer to watch videos no worries. I create for you that too. Just head to my YouTube channel to find out these pro and cons and if you like the content don’t forget to subscribe.
Anyway back to us. Let’s start with the cons.

London Eye
London Eye at sunrise

Cons number 1
View. You don’t wake up in a nice field with a nice view. You are on the street. So forget about to wake up and look to a nice landscape. The best thing you might be able to look at are foxes eating kebabs from what people left. Yep it happened while I was sleeping in a car park.

Cons number 2
Silence. You certainly don’t want people know you are living in your van and park in front of their houses. Don’t get me wrong, some people don’t have a problem with it but some others might be. So it is better avoid problems and keep silence while you are in the van. So you are acting like you are dead, which is not funny specially when you are back in the van in the afternoon and you still have the rest of the day to go.

Cons number 3
Food. Because I don’t want to make any noise in the van I stopped to cook. I love food and I love to cook. So basically my meals are made from food that is already prepared, bought from supermarkets like sandwiches or crisps. Of course sometimes I am going to visit some friends, thanks to them I can have a nice meal while I am staying in the city because of my full time job.

Cons number 4
Parking. I don’t like to go to work with the van because near to my job there aren’t too many spaces where to park, plus I finish work at 4PM and the traffic is insane. I prefer to go around London with my bicycle but by doing this I need to leave the van somewhere. Here is the problem. In London during the day there are Pay and Display. This mean that a certain times of the day you need to pay to park. So I need to find every time a place where to leave the van without this rule cause it can be quite expensive during the whole month and It is not easy to find parking space where there aren’t Pay and Display.

Sunrise in Putney
River Thames at sunrise

Now I am sure you are wondering what the pros are. Well one pro that I found is that actually you save money. You need to be careful to don’t spend too much in food though. As I was saying because I stopped cooking sometimes I like to have a nice meal without annoying friends. Eat out in London can be quite expensive. So if you are careful with this, you can actually save money.

Another pro is the parking space. What? You just said is a cons… Yes I said so but I said is a cons during the day. Pay and Display are only at a certain times of the day. The maximum I found until now is 7PM. After that you can park for free. This mean you can basically park anywhere without paying and this is mean you can sleep anywhere. I park my van in main roads and not in small roads. This is because I feel safer.

These pro and cons are coming from my experiences living in the van until now. Of course yours might be different or some might be similar to mine. It depends on your experiences and of course on your self as we are all different.

Richmond Park
Richmond Park

Now I decided to share my stories with you not only because of the van or because of photography… I believe there is no failure in what we decide to do, at list from my point of view. There is what you want and your experiences. Do what you feel… of course in respect of others, please remember this, you are not the only one in this world. Respect the places where you are going and of course respect your self. Try things! Because by trying things you discover more of your self, what you like and what you don’t like. You never know where you might end up. I mean I never thought I would be able to speak a second language, I never thought I would lived in a different country and specially I never thought I would live in a van and find out that I love to take photos and share with you my stories. The good experiences will stay with you and from the bad ones you learn.

I am done for today. Hope you enjoy the reading and thank you so much to have passed by. Don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter so I can keep you update with new posts and if you want there is also a Facebook group that I create where you can share photos and your stories as well.

Have a lovely weekend guys. I will see you next. Ciao.

Travel: Isle of Sheppey

Hello everyone, hope you had a nice weekend.
As I mentioned on my previous blog I had to go to Isle of Sheppey to fix the water pump of my van.
I never been there so discover a new place has been wonderful.

I stayed in a campsite called LeoBay where they also fix campervans and convert them to. Basically if you are going there and you have something on your van that is not working, well they will fix it.
Of course these services are not for free but they are reasonable, at list for me it has been. The other good side of this place is that they welcoming you offering coffee or tea, at your choice, and muffins at your arrival.
I did enjoy staying there cause they are quite easy going and everything is included in the price, laundry too.

The weather was also really nice, not too cold and not too hot. I managed to have a short swim in the sea.
As I spent here the weekend I decided to go exploring the area around and take some photos of the sunset.
From when I started until now
living in the van is going well. It lets me going around on my spare time and visit new places without spending too much money in transport or accommodation.
Anyway I am sharing with you some of the photos I took in the Isle of Sheppey and you can also have a look at the video I made while there and if you like it… well subscribe to the channel.

https://youtu.be/Jlgi92WGrgc

I will be in Italy in September visiting “Le cinque terre” and for a personal project, as some of you know already I like to take stories of people and their portraits.

Thank you so much to have pass by this blog and to have take the time to read it. You have no idea how much I appreciate. Anyway hope you are well and don’t forget to never stop yourself to try what you would like to do. There is no fail in what we do, only experiences to learn from and to discover our self, even if sometimes can be really really hard. Just learn to do a step at the time and breathe.

Have a nice week everyone. I will see you next. Ciao.

Photos for new blog1

Travel: Limone – Italy

Hello everyone, hope you are ok and had a nice weekend.
I haven’t posted for a while as I have been busy with my new van life but no worries you will soon get to see some of the adventures I have recorded for you. For this post I decided to write about a place I have been to in Italy. A journey that I had with my father to this little town that we used to go to when I was young. I totally forgot how beautiful it is.
So I hope you enjoy the reading and the photos I took for you.

Limone is a town on the West coast of Garda Lake.
I have been there lots of time with my family when I was a child. For this reason when I went back to Italy this year, I decided to go back there for a visit.

My father wanted to come also as he was curious to see the new “Pista Ciclabile” as it has recently been built. Which is a bridge along the shore, built above the lake for bicycles and walks only.
It starts in this town Limone, but I am not sure where it ends. Specially because seems it is not finished yet and it will be longer than what it is right now.

CicloPista1

It was in the beginning of February that we visited. Lucky as there aren’t too many tourists during this period cause it is too cold. On the other hand, unfortunately most of the town is closed. Shops, restaurants, market, etc.
It really depends when you prefer to visit places. In the summer time you will find everything open, rent bicycles and boats but be prepared for crowds.

The roads of the town are narrow. While walking across the town you will walk up and down big or little hills as of course it is built below mountains on the shore of the lake. Most of the houses are built in stones with colourful plants growing on them. While I was walking through these alleys and looking at the buildings, my thoughts went back to the past I imagined how this town was built and how people were living there.

Luckily for us while walking, we found a restaurant open, the Gemma restaurant. The service was really super friendly and the food was spectacular. We ordered spaghetti with seafood to share between the two of us. The portion was gigantic, served in a big ceramic tray. After this I ordered for my self, rabbit with white polenta. Yes, I love food and I love it more when is so amazingly tasty. We literally cleaned our plates. Even the waiter was impress.

Besides the nice food and the good service, there was another thing that was enjoyable. The view. The windows were a perfect frame for the lake and the mountains so I decided to take a photo and fortunately for me, two swans decided to pass by and get into the frame giving to the photo a more interesting look.

Limone4

After dinner we decided to go and walk on the famous “ciclopista”.
Unfortunately we did not manage to walk all the way till the end as my father gets tired after a while, specially after all the foods we had eaten. I think for him it was time for a nap. In his seventieth year, who can blame him? He was really happy with this day and he enjoyed posing for some photos. The sun was setting while walking back, leaving us with wonderful colours and views of the shore and the mountains on the other side of the coast.

CicloPista2
CicloPista3

It was a magical place for me even if we didn’t spend a lot of time there. I will definitely go back to visit the famous buildings were the lemons grow and to spend more time taking photos and discover more about this little village.

 

 

Starting to blog

Hi everyone and welcome to this blog.
I decided to start it as I am starting to take my journey…
Where? Well I am not sure yet.
In the last years I started to discover a bit more of myself, and this year I would like to make it the year of changes.

The first change is trying to develop more documentary photography. I love talking to people and telling their story from their own prospective. I feel grateful that somebody opens up with me and lets me take their portrait.
I am still researching my portrait style but I know it will come at one point with more practice and experience.

The second change… landscape. I never tried it before and last year I started to realise that I really like it. Quite tough though and I am still learning but I like to go for walks or going for a ride with my bicycle on my own and just stay there, finding a place that inspires me, trying to find a composition and waiting for the weather to be the way I want it. I am still not really good at it but I am working on it.
Landscape photography helps me clear my mind. It makes me feel at peace with myself.

The third change… well. I just bought a van and in the end of May I am going to start living in it. It is not converted yet which is going to happen in the next months.
End of May because the contract of the house I am living in will end by then so I decided that my adventure will start from there. It’s anyway already started as in the meantime I am trying as well to be a freelance photographer while I am working full time as a bookbinder and yes… As you understood already, I would like to start a nomad life with photography as a job.

Cliffs of Moher01

I know it won’t be easy and I know it will take a really long time to be a pro photographer and of course find my balance by living in the van, but it’s something I know I have to do.
From when I had this idea I feel lighter and happy. Yes. I am scared. Am I doing the right thing? Will it be dangerous? Will I be able to support myself only with photography? Do I really want to jump in this adventure, as I am not that young anymore and I never done something like it? Is it going to work? Lots of questions but in the end… which question about life actually has an answer?
What I know is that I don’t want to look back one day and regret I didn’t try.
With time, patience and hard work everything is possible. I think.

By sharing my adventure with you from the start I hope I will help you be inspired and learn from my mistakes and my achievement to find your own path.
So welcome to this blog. Subscribe to the newsletter to have updates on new posts or drop me an email even if it’s just to say hi.
Have a happy life and a big smile. Always forward. I’ll see you on the second post.