Published February 3, 2023 08:12AM EST
People often choose to live less conventional lifestyles for a variety of reasons. Some want to live more lightly on the land, while others want to travel more, perhaps world-schooling their kids while on the road. Others, like Deyana, welcomed bus life after a breakup that left her wanting to explore more of the world.
Originally from New Jersey, it was Deyana’s passion for travel that prompted her to transition into a more adventurous lifestyle. To do that, she renovated a 2003 GMC five-window school bus herself, transforming it into a comfy home and office on wheels where she can continue her full-time work as a virtual special education teacher. It has a lot of excellent features, like a shower, a large closet, and enough space for both a refrigerator and a freezer.
Check her lovely bus home out via Tiny Home Tours:
The exterior of the bus is a neutral beige, which Deyana painted herself, using rollers and a lot of patience. One side of the bus has a mural that Deyana also designed and executed, using a favorite photo as a reference. The top of the bus has a roof deck, as well as 525 watts of solar power provided by a set of flexible Renology panels, which conform nicely to the curved roof surface. Deyana has modified the original folding doors by bolting the pieces together so that they open like a regular swinging door.
The back of the bus has a rack for storing Deyana’s other set of smaller wheels, a Yamaha scooter that allows her to explore cities easily without having to maneuver her bus around.
The inside of the bus follows the same neutral palette; here in the entrance, Deyana has added an extra cabinet for storage for shoes and pet items for her dog Hancho. The cabinet also works well for holding her Jackery rechargeable battery-powered generator, which she uses for charging devices and powering her soundbar for music. This zone can be screened off with a curtain that Deyana installed for more privacy, and for blocking out light.
The middle of the bus holds the kitchen, which has been split into two parts, one on either side of the bus. On one side, we have the compact propane stove and oven, which also has a cabinet underneath for storing pots and pans.
The other side has a bar-sized sink and a large butcher block countertop for preparing food. Deyana opted for peel-and-stick tile here, in order to reduce the overall load on the bus. There are also wall-mounted racks for putting away spices and other kitchen equipment.
We also like how Deyana has incorporated slide-outs for her cabinets that reduce the need for rummaging around for things at the back.
This side also has Deyana’s tiny shower stall, outfitted with a tight—but convenient—24-inch by 24-inch shower pan. With a 46-gallon reservoir of water, Deyana can wash dishes and take quick showers, without having to refill her water supply for about two weeks.
The other side of the bus also has this small sitting area, which Deyana uses as a spot for working and eating, with the addition of a folding table. The seat can pull out to transform into a small guest bed.
Next up is the section of the bus that holds the closet and pantry.
Here on one side, we have Deyana’s closet, which is 3 feet wide and quite large compared to most closets in other tiny homes.
The other side includes the kitchen pantry on top and a space that is wide enough to hold an RV-sized refrigerator and freezer. Typically, many bus homes have only a small refrigerator, so having a freezer is definitely a plus.
We love how Deyana has added some artificial plants to decorate the skylight and hatch up to the roof deck.
At the rear of the bus, Deyana has her full-sized bed. There is integrated storage space in her headboard for storing thicker clothing items like sweatpants and coats.
Below, Hancho the dog has his bed, hidden in a nook made just for him.
So far, Deyana notes that there are both advantages and disadvantages to living the bus life:
“Meeting fellow nomads has been super cool. I’ve met so many people from all across the country. [But] the downfalls of bus life has been the mechanical issues [which] have not been fun.”
Nevertheless, despite the drawbacks, Deyana says that she’s been pleasantly surprised by bus life:
“Honestly, the thing that surprised me the most is how safe I felt. That was something I worried about initially, being a solo female traveler, and exploring different parts of the country that I’m not familiar with. But having Hancho helps of course, but also getting recommendations from people on where to stay, and locals have been really nice with recommendations as well.”
To follow Deyana’s journey, check out her YouTube and Instagram.