Introducing Klaus the Knaus

In 2008 my most favourite possession in the world ever came into my life. He’d made it after a long drive from Hamburg in Germany. I’ve mentioned Klaus the Knaus before when I introduced Hot Stuff, the bloke in my life. He loves Klaus just as much as me. When we met the old boy needed a bit of attention, the van that is not the boyfriend. He was showing the signs of old age and would have cost a fortune in professional repair bills. However thanks to Hot Stuff’s handy tendencies Klaus lives another day. He has a new pump, an overhauled heating system, repairs to his underside, new skylights, an extra solar panel and fancy electrical gadgetry installed.

Today I thought I’d take you on an internal tour. I hope that you agree that Klaus’ unassuming vintage exterior hides extremely comfortable living quarters. I’ve spent many a happy holiday here in the UK and continental Europe. Back in 2015 there was even a nine month spell where Klaus was my main residence. When I popped over to France there was no packing to do. I just unplugged my home and drove off.

We’ll start with a long view of the inside taken from the bedroom area above the cab. Klaus has a kitchen and two separate areas with tables. He was re-upholstered back in 2015 just before my living in the van experiment. I’m really pleased with how the green merges nicely with the view of the changing natural environment outside.

Here’s the bedroom space reached by a ladder. It was a great when I was a singleton and just about okay now there’s a big bloke to share it with. Climbing over him when I need a wee in the middle of the night is like a mini Alpine expedition! We’ve just treated ourselves to new feather duvets and pillows. The blanket was a souvenir from Yellowstone National Park, a gift from a friend.

Here’s the kitchen hidden under fold up worktops. Very simple but I’ve rustled up all sorts here over the years. There’s a fridge (powered either by electric hook up or LPG) under the hob and storage cupboards above it and under the grill. There’s a halogen cooker hidden away under the seating and when I was living in the van my slow cooker came with me too. These days we’re mostly off grid so we mostly make do with the two rings and a barbie. The pretty whistling kettle is always on the boil.

We dine and prepare food here. It’s our gaming table too. Kids have coloured and this serves as Hotstuffs TV area where he watches rugby and fishing programmes on his laptop and we have the occasional movie night. I’m pleased with my reasonably new cushions. George from Asda’s finest. I popped a out for a pint of milk and came back with bagfuls of stuff to do a van makeover. Their homeware really does have some surprising lovely finds.

And here’s my favourite place to hang out especially now that we keep the homebrew here! The table adjusts to full height if needed but we keep it down low these days. It used to be a bed for a teenager but now serves as my lovely chillout zone where I read, write, sew and snooze. There’s another bunk above but that’s used for storage these days. The bee cushion and blanket were also a recent acquisitions after that recent wander around Asda!

Tucked away at the back of the van is the bathroom. There’s a ‘No Pooing in the Toilet’ rule for anyone else but me if we’re on a site with amenities. I’m the exception as I’m the one who always empties the thing. I have to do the ‘walk of shame’ with the full casket across campgrounds every couple of days. The washbasin has a nifty pull out tap that becomes a shower.

There’s plenty of stoage. Cupboards, under seat compartments and on a big wide shelf above the living area door. Every so often I have a clear out to keep the weight down below the van’s legal limits.

Here’s our resident Moomin. Every motorhome should have one. He hangs on an elastic cord that I installed to keep books secure when the van is on the move. I have to say that they still fall on the floor as we’re going along. The little lantern is rechargeable and provides extra off grid glow. Hotstuff’s future plans including putting in extra off grid lighting. Watch this space…..

Evidence of past festivals!

Cab Yoda, bought from a Christmas craft fayre in Totnes. He keeps the Moomin company when we’re not around.

And here’s some technical gubbins. Hotstuff would be unhappy if I’d only posted pictures of cushions. I didn’t show off the inverter that he installed. It shifts power between the main battery and leisure battery. The two big solar panels on the roof mean that we’re fully self sufficient off site. We can power up laptops and phones to our heart’s content. I should also point out that we’re toasty warm and have lots of hot water when we need it because of an in-van central heating system.

So I hope you’ve enjoy the tour and agree that we’re really rather cosy when we go away in Klaus. No doubt you’ll meet him again when I post about our future adventures.

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