The Skoolie Livin’ Journey Begins
From school and corporate life making six figures, to leaving it all behind to build a business and a tiny house – we thought we had the plan.
That is until we stumbled across the skoolie movement.
My name is Chris Kochan and my fiancee sitting shotgun is Sarah Shaeffer. Right now, we live in Madison, WI, but we travel often. As I write this I am sitting at the Marriott Marquee in San Diego after just spending a week in Santa Barbara, CA. Just three weeks ago we spent a week in Glenwood Springs, CO.
The Back Story
Sarah and I met in Milwaukee, WI on September 25th, 2015. I had just started a new job at Harley-Davidson, while she was a sophomore in college. After some peer pressure from friends, I decided to head to a party even though I told them I would not be drinking much. Standing on the front porch of a house right across from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Sarah and two of her friends came stumbling down the road.
One of her friends she was with knew one of my friends, so he called him up onto the porch. Naturally, Sarah and her friend followed him onto the porch. Both Sarah and her friend (another women) came through and stopped by me. Smiling, mostly because I was laughing at how drunk they were, Sarah of all things noticed and complimented my teeth.
Knowing they were too drunk, I let them admire until they walked away.
After they started walking down the road back to their apartment, Sarah’s friend came running back to ask for my number for Sarah. Supposedly in her drunken state, Sarah told her friend “I feel like I have to know him” but, was a little too tipsy (and shy) to come running back by herself.
The rest is history!
Welcome to Skoolie Livin’
Fast forward two and a half years, Sarah finished up her time in school in May, 2018 from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. I moved back to Wisconsin from Silicon Valley after being out there for a little over a year in a supply chain position at Apple.
We started to look for a different pace of life, where we could travel and not be bogged down by a regular job. It started with apartments and building a business, with the goal to move to Glenwood Springs, CO. Then it evolved into wanting to build a tiny house to move there, since it would cost about 2 years of renting to build it.
After watching too many videos of various options of tiny houses, we stumbled across @navigationnowhere’s videos on YouTube. Then, we turned to his instagram account. While I sifted through the numerous instagram accounts out there of people converting buses, Sarah turned to Pinterest. After seeing how people were turning old school buses into quality homes and touring the world, we knew it was what we needed to be doing, too.
We started by searching for a bus. Something I didn’t think would be that difficult, since there are literally hundreds out there on the internet listed for sale.
After diving into forums, watching videos from others who have built out their bus conversions, and looking through hundreds of bus listings…. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
The journey continues. We are currently looking for a bus, but in the next article I’ll summarize the good information and perspectives I have found when it comes to finding a bus to convert into a skoolie.
Welcome to Skoolie Livin!