• Devan

Zō Is Unwell And I’m Not Feeling Great Myself

Updated: Aug 5, 2020


I have some news about Zō to share with you.  First a recap…

In 2014 I made a life decision that led me to plan, prepare, and save for a significant lifestyle change.  A major factor in that planning was the purchase of my van.   It took a lot more time than I hoped it would, and there were many ups and downs to get me there. 

However, driving Zō off the dealership lot in late January 2017 was a key component in fulfilling my dream.  Once I got Zō, things began to fall into place.  By June 2017 I began living my new life/lifestyle full time.

Since life happens while we’re busy making plans, 🙂 a surprise twist brought me back to AZ in late September 2017.  My Monster had become quite ill and needed my help. Thankfully my lifestyle permitted for that.

Recently Monster began doing better, so I planned to leave for Colorado in the next week or so.

On the morning of 03/13, I responded to an email from a longtime friend, telling him I was happier than I had ever been in my life.  A sentiment I found myself sharing with several people in the weeks prior.  After 10 months living my new lifestyle, despite being stuck in AZ for the last several months, I had settled into a life and lifestyle I loved.

The Accident

Just after 5 PM on 03/13 a driver ran a red light and crashed into Zō, almost tipping her over.  Thankfully she righted herself, but the rear suspension appears to be toast and the drive shaft was dragging the ground at the front.  I do not yet have the police report, but officers on the scene cited the other driver for running a red.  Both his insurance company and my own have agreed he was totally at fault.

I was in shock at the scene at first.  In fact, I didn’t move out of the driver seat until the witnesses (three beautiful people were kind enough to stop and make statements) had completed their statements, the other car was already on the bed of the tow truck.

I sat there, in the van, in the middle of the intersection, and in a daze. I periodically called out for Basil, who had not made a sound during or since the impact. Finally, they told me they needed me to get out so they could hook up Zō. 

When I finally got out of the van and walked to the street corner, I broke down.  Sobbing as if the world had come to an end.  It felt for a moment like it had when I looked at the scene finally.

One of the officers even came over to check on me after noticing my distress.  He had to coax me away from an enormous metal traffic box I was hiding behind so no one driving by could see me crying.  I was not in a good frame of mind over what happened and I was really worried about Basil.

What About Basil?

The officers would not let me look for Basil until Zō was moved to the side of the road, but eventually, we found him hiding under stuff in a pocket of empty space.  As soon as the officer tried to reach for him he scurried further back.  At least I knew he was ok. 

I rode with the tow truck driver to the salvage yard where I attempted to get Basil out.  He was scared too though and wedged himself in just out of reach.

The van was (and still is) a disaster inside from the accident already.  The tow truck driver, though kind to me, was becoming agitated at being delayed over a cat and began slinging stuff here, there, and everywhere to get to him out.  Once I finally had him in my arms, I called Monster who sent an Uber to pick us up.


My sweet travel buddy ‘Basil Kitty’ – a few days before the accident. Thankfully he’s doing fine.

After I got Basil to The Monster’s place, I went to the ER to get checked out.  I ended up being there until 2 AM.  They ran every test imaginable.  That was fairly traumatizing in itself.  (For anyone concerned, I am taking steps to assure my current and future medical needs will be addressed)

The State of Zō

Many items inside Zō were destroyed by the impact and a few of the Rubbermaid style containers were cracked and broken.  My laptop was thrown from the back to the front and though working, it isn’t functioning as normal.  It keeps locking up. 

My shelves had parts broken off, my butane stove case is destroyed and the stove is in 3 pieces.  I’m not sure if it’s still usable.  Honestly, though, I haven’t been able to do much assessing of the interior situation beyond that.  One thing is certain, everything will need to be pulled out and I will have to start over.

If the adjuster doesn’t total her.  Which stands at a 50/50 chance right now.  I’ll know more by early next week.  I can’t replace her if they don’t fix her and I refuse to deal with that reality at the moment.  I NEED them to fix her.  I’ve impressed on the adjuster the importance of making his decision in that direction if at all possible.

What’s Next?

In a worst-case scenario, I have to start over.  I can’t imagine another 3 years of planning, but perhaps it wouldn’t take that long the second time around.

In a best case, they repair her.  There would still be issues to overcome, but those issues would be much less severe.

I keep reminding myself that bad things happening often lead us to better things.  There is a reason I am going through this and in the end, I know I will be fine.  Everything will work out as it should.  That doesn’t mean I will sit back and let things happen though.  I will do what I need to do to protect my interests.

I’ve come too far, worked too hard, and lived ‘The Zen of Zō’ long enough now to know one thing for certain… I am not done with this journey.  Not by a long shot.

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#accident #vanlife #basil #traveldelay #AZ #Zō #dailylife #news #update #basilkitty #nomadicat

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