Monday, June 28, 2010

Travelers’ Necklace


When I decided to van-dwell and travel fulltime, I devised the a necklace in order to keep track of how many other like-minded vandwellers I met on the road. I bought a bag of plastic craft beads and had a leather shoe lace. Each time I met another vandweller, I added a bead to my necklace. Soon others got to liking the idea and began trading beads with me. Some are even making there own beads to give out to other vandwellers they meet. The idea is spreading... and my necklace is growing. I have a list of who each bead represents. As time goes on some of the earlier beads are being replaced with glass or stone beads by the people they represent.  The arrowhead in the center was found on a California beach and Vandweller Grandmahuggababy did the beautiful wire-wrap for me.  The red bead is hers which she also wire-wrapped. Next to it is a little gold Buddha from Vandweller AstroBri.  The purple bead is from Brian deYounger, and Grandmahuggababy also wire-wrapped that one. The necklace seems to take on a life of it’s own… and of course each Vandweller’s Necklace will have it’s own distinct look… and will be as varied as we are ourselves.  We are a family, a tribe on wheels… seeing America… loving life.

"We were an island of misfits, a family, a tribe. much like i imagine more primitive and wise cultures lived. anyhow, i feel that way about vandwellers. we are drawn to a way of life on the fringes of the common culture. some of us seek solitude, some community. we have times of incredible peace, and sharp loneliness. we are all such different individuals, bound by a passion for the adventures in life, as experienced from our little mobile dwellings. at vandwellers, we find a place to give support/get support..... a tribe of our own."   by twokniveskatie

See for more information on vandwelling.

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Who is Swankie?

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Anywhere, USA, Full-Time USA traveler, United States
Visit me on In 2006, I was shopping for a wheelchair. By 2007, I had new knees, better health and by 2008 a kayak. In Aug 2013, I kayaked my 49th state, Alaska, at the Holgate Glacier and in May 2014, I kayaked Hawaii, my 50th state, to celebrate my 70th Birthday and the finale to the wonderful adventure of Kayaking America? Next up... Solo Hiking the Arizona Trail, 820 miles in Spring 2017. In training now for the hike.