Be thankful for what you’ve got: 1975 Dodge Mobile Traveler

Vans

A few nice van life camping images I found:

Be thankful for what you’ve got: 1975 Dodge Mobile Traveler
van life camping
Image by Cargolex
A different kind of post today, on this day of Thanksgiving in the United States.

This interesting motorhome (or Caravan, or RV, whatever you prefer) is a Mobile Traveler, a high-end class C motorhome built from the early seventies until the late eighties using a van chassis (usually either a Dodge Ram Van or a Chevrolet/GMC van) as a basis. The cab and the vivid colors are straight out of the mid-1970s, and for a forty year old motorhome, it’s in pretty good shape. These gas-hungry machines are usually about 20 feet long and get maybe 8 to 10 mpg from their big 440-cubic inch engines, but nobody buys something like this for speed or economy.

In fact, although people still use these for recreational camping (they’re cheap, and still good at what they do), that’s not what this is about either.

The streets of San Francisco, Seattle, Oakland, Los Angeles and other western cities are dotted with such vehicles. As property values skyrocket, particularly in cities with high-dollar tech industries, more and more people are pushed out of places with reasonable rents, which are often then torn down to make way for luxury condos or worse – expensive pied-a-tierres that nobody actually lives in year round. The result in many of these cities has been a spectacular increase in homelessness. In the area where this Motorhome was seen, average rents have risen by 61% in six years.

Earlier this year, the annual “one night count” – done nationwide to assess the number of homeless living in various cities, showed a 21% increase in homelessness in Seattle. Tent cities and lines of RVs parked in industrial areas are increasingly common sights.

If you’re home with your family and well fed, remember that some are not – and there but for fate, that could be you. It is incumbent on those who have to help those who don’t, and always remember that if circumstances were different, it could be you needing help.

Flickr’s users are global, but if you’d like to help in the United States, please visit some of these links to find out how:

The National Coalition for the Homeless.

National alliance to end homelessness.

National coalition for homeless veterans.

©2015 A. Kwanten.