The Art of Asking for Help

You could say that I’ve had a pretty tumultuous month on the road.

From getting stuck in Farmington, NM for almost 3 weeks, rebuilding almost everything on Betsy, to completing the Route 66 part of my journey, to pushing through my longest and farthest driving day ever from Oklahoma City to Austin, TX, to getting stuck yet again in Austin with my soul twin I had never met in person before and living with her in her 24ft RV, Mander the Dodge Commander.

IMG_3782
Mander and Betsy. Best Friends Forever.

This entire trip I’ve been at the mercy of the unpredictable, spontaneous, wonderful, and magical kindness of strangers. This takes practice, time, and the elusive skill of trusting your gut more than your fears.

I recently rewatched Amanda Palmer’s TED talk about the Art of Asking and I couldn’t believe how much of this I experienced myself since the first time I watched it.

I feel like I’m always getting asked how I’m pulling this adventure off, and to tell you the truth I don’t know. What I do know is that I’m standing on the shoulders of giants. I’m relying on the fact that everything I need in this world to survive another day already exists I just have to be creative enough to see it and open and felixible enough to let it into my experience in whatever form it comes in.

Right now I’m stuck in Austin. If you don’t follow my Instagram, you might not know but Betsy’s transmission decided that 3rd gear was the only one it wanted to be in. I’ve tried everything and at this point it’s looking like the only option I have is to take the damn thing out and most likely take it apart and put it back together. Again.

At this point I’m only 8 hours from my planned final destination of New Orleans. I’m at the end of my nest egg that I saved for this trip, which was supposed to be 2 weeks long which has turned into 2 months long. My emergency credit card is maxed out from having to fix my brakes in Albuquerque. And I still have to figure out how I’m going to rebuild my entire transmission in the middle of the street.

View this post on Instagram

Well, my transmission took a big ol' dump. She's stuck in 3rd and I can't get her out. So it's looking like I'll be in Austin through the holiday season. I keep repeating to myself that it's about the journey and not the destination but it's hard to keep from getting discouraged. If you know of any temporary jobs here in the Austin area, please send them my way. This will probably be my biggest hurdle yet. Thanks so much for all your support and help along the way. I can't believe the places I ended up, the people I've met, experiences I've had, and relationships I've cultivated because of this trip. It's everything I wanted it to be and many things I never thought I could have. I'm grateful beyond any possible comprehension and I never want to stop feeling that way, even when I'm in the depths of despair fighting Betsy's hissy fits. ❤️🔧

A post shared by Alice Pye (@travels_with_betsy) on

I’ve been extremely lucky to get the help I have received, even without asking for it, and I’m beyond grateful that anyone even reads this, and follows my damn journey in any capacity, and wants to help any amount at all to let me live this crazy dream I’ve had for as long as I can remember. But I think I’m at the point now where I have to be even more vulnerable and ask for help now more than ever. So here it goes…

If you know of anyone that can help me here in Austin either with their expertise, their tools, their garage space, their trailer or tow truck, their leftovers from Christmas dinner, their friendship, their extra coffee, a place to shower, or a temporary job or gig so I can make some money here I would be more than grateful for it. If you have been following my story from afar, you have watched me break down again and again and again. You have also seen me keep pushing through it all again and again and again. If you’re not in Austin or the surrounding area and you don’t know of or don’t have any of the things above to help me, I also have a PayPal and Venmo. If you have any other ideas on how you can help, feel free to shoot me a message or leave a comment!

To open ourselves up to the greatest happiness we have to face our biggest fears. This is me doing just that.

Advertisements

Ole’ Betsy

When I first started looking for a truck I didn’t know what I was going to find. I looked at everything from tiny 90s Toyotas to beaten up Broncos to big old F250s with V8 engines. In the end though I came to the realization that if I’m going to make such a large purchase which I plan on investing so much time into, it better be something I really really love.

 

I ended up buying the oldest truck I could find. A 1963 Ford F100 with a sweet little straight 6 223 engine.

I found her on Craigslist in Rancho Cucamonga, California (which is amusingly located on Route 66). Her previous owners had put in a lot of work on her before she came to me but she still needed more before she was going to head out for the trip of both our lifetimes.

Her quirks are many, for a start, her bed is actually from a different year all together. The Ford trucks from 1963 all received the bed from previous years because of some sort of fault with the design of their unibody trucks and surplus of truck beds from previous years, as I found out after some research. Sometimes the emergency flashers come on, however there’s no switch for her to even have emergency flashers. When her lights are on, the right turn signal just stays on and doesn’t flash like it should, but works fine when the lights are off. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Within the 4 months of owning her I’ve learned so much. I’ve learned a lot about her, but I’ve also learned a lot about myself as well. To own something this old, that comes from a different time, really puts your grit, character, and determination to the test. I cannot be afraid of the challenges she will surly put in front of me, but overcoming them will feel more incredible than anything I’ve ever experienced before. It’s a cliche, but it really is about working to fix something that’s broken to love for many many years, instead of throwing it out and getting a new to play with every year.

To quote the song which gave Betsy her name, “She may be rusted iron, but to me she’s solid gold.”

17903775_10154324145130880_1456740015698559854_n