Man…..it’s been a challenge. I am still looking for a spot to store/park/work on the Skoolie throughout the Fall/Winter. At this point I am still searching for spots on Craigslist, using my network and seeing if I can get it registered as a pre-converted school bus which would allow me to park it anywhere and work on it. I have gotten some more time from the woman’s whose land it is now on to keep looking yet I know I’ll have to be moving it soon.
At times this is definitely weighty on the mental yet I’m not unbowed yet. Everyday someone in my circle or who just hears about the project reminds me how excited they are to see this being done. I know that this is just one of many hurdles yet why is this one so tall?! I know I’m built for it and I remind myself daily that I asked for it..ha.
At the same time I have to make sure I am neglecting no other part of the project. The essential aspect of the Old Skoolie 1863 Project which makes it different from similar bus conversions is that it will be an RV/Mobile community center. So I have to make sure that I am reaching the people who are willing to add on to the Hood Health aspects of the project. Many have reached out to me wanting to know what ways that they can add on. I’m still processing all of it. It has been challenging since my mental is obsessed with find a spot for the school bus then I remind myself…dude…you bought a damn bus..lol.
So I bought a bus. Through a great community on facebook, Skoolie Converters, I got in contact with Schlomy .He had bought a partially converted school bus which due to several reasons he couldn’t complete. While a door was closing for him it was opening for me. So I have a partially converted school bus sitting in Connecticut…who would’ve ever thought. It’s on. I have been talking and planning this whole adventure of Old Skoolie 1863 and now I’m at a major phase. I’m in a state of wonderment.
When I was a young teenager my father moved us out of the hood and bought a house. This house was a wreck! The grass was five feet high in the yard. An old lady had owned the house who had dementia and set the house on fire. It had been unoccupied for eight years. She had used the backporch as a garbage can. Nothing had been moved out of the house. There was food in the fridge and cabinents. Her clothes and furniture still in the house. My father cleaned out two rooms and we moved in. That whole year we cleaned it up. I remember scrubing walls, tearing up moldy rugs, and hauling trash into a big bin. My father was a jack of all trades. He fixed up the plumbing, electicity, carpentry, etc with the house. Where others saw a run down house my father saw a palace that he could make for his family. Now here we are years later where others see a run down school bus I see Old Skoolie 1863. If you would’ve told me a year ago that I would be on this path I would’ve laughed at you and thought you were delerious.
The Old Skoolie 1863 project is about transforming a school bus into a RV/living space and community center for the promotion of urban (hood)health and Black media
Old Skoolie 1863 will distribute, educate and implement solutions to issues involving HoodHealth and the Legacy Project. HoodHealth acknowledges that there is a current crisis involving Black and Brown people centered around health disparity. The Legacy Porject highlights the place of Blacks in American history by visiting historical sites reintroducing them to a modern audience. Old Skoolie 1863 will not just my home; it will be the natural extension of my work and an effort in furtherance of the HoodHealth movement and the Legacy Project. You can learn more about the whole idea (that is coming into existence) of the the Old Skoolie 1863 proejct in the FAQ section. If you want to know more about why I’m qualified to “do this crazy thing” you can check more out about my background here.
One thing that I learned from my father is it is all about your skill set (that you can always increase) plus your network of family and friends. With those two elements you can (and if you are diligent will) do anything. It is not about what can be done, it is about what does it take to get it done.
There are challenges and problems each step of the way (right now I’m working on finding a permanent spot to keep it while I do the initial conversions so that I can register it). The key is to rise to each challenge and to solve each problem. Please keep in touch with me as in a few weeks I will be launching a crowd fundraiser. If you want to add on in any other ways check out my link here. I have been slacking on the posts yet now that its officially on expect more frequent post that detail each step of my journey, each hurdle, each insight and probably a healthy dose of me ranting.
It has been a while yet Old Skoolie 1863 is still full steam underway. Some big advances have been made behind the scenes and I’ll work to catch everyone up in due time. I must say though that several skoolie groups on FB have been invaluable in terms of knowledge about the subject. This blog will be active again also so that y’all can continue to walk step by step with me through this amazing journey that has already transformed my life on so many levels. So as this is the renewal of the blog let me just drop off a few bullet points of somethings that have been percolating.
Historypin.com is a global community collaborating around history. Being the steward of my family’s history it is a great site for curating this history. I have started to do so creating collections for the paternal side of my family and the maternal side of my family. I am also documenting some of the history of Martin Luther King Elementary School in New Haven, Ct which no longer exists. My mother was a teacher there from the mid 70’s into 2000. I inherited all of the flicks that she took.
The site is nicely streamlined perfectly for such curating. Nicely designed for the casual or serious documenting. In the long run it is the site I will be utilizing to document the HoodHealth history of Black America during Old Skoolie 1863’s inaugural run. It also has avnice compatible app. Look forward to lost Black towns, hidden maroon colonies, inner city enclaves and more to be documented by me via historypin when the journey begins.l
I am always checking for skoolies online to keep my inspiration and motivation up. I think I’ll start posting daily posts of these eye skoolie skittles (candy). Here is one that is rolling in South America. Look how crisp and clean this is!
Check out more of the design here.
Many things have been happening in regards to Old Skoolie 1863. In due time I will catch everyone up. I will say that it has been a journey of hit and miss with many things yet I have the fortitude to make sure that I reach all essential goals the first quarter of this year. I have also been involved in a host of events and projects for this #BlackHistory #BlackPresence #BlackFuture month. As we move through the rest of this month into next month I will be dropping a few links to articles that highlight the connection between travel and the Black experience as I work myself back to being consistent the blog.