I stopped at the rest area just south of Gurdon, Ar. today and noticed a Chevy work van (van with no windows). It had tags from the Pacific Northwest and was easy to recognize as a van dweller vehicle ( living or long term travelling in a van).
The bicycle on top and the curtain blocking off the rear cargo area gave it away. Add the fact that it was parked away from the restrooms and you know I had to check it out.
The driver was reading a paperback western novel and having canned ham and crackers for lunch. We talked for about 15 minutes and I found out that he was indeed a "vandweller". He told a little about his rig and some of the mistakes he had made as he taught himself about living in a van. He has an inverter to power his laptop and was using an "air-card" for internet access.
He powered up the laptop when I told him about the http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/VanDwellers/ and he book marked it. It has over 100,000 messages and will take a long time to find the information.
After I was back on the road, I realized I should have sent him to http://www.cheaprvliving.com/ . As Bob Wells has a great site with several examples of how people fix their vans for vandwelling.
He was soft spoken and a real pleasure to talk to. I hope he enjoyed our time together as much as I enjoyed it. It was soon time for me to hit the road and I wished him well on his travels.
Arkansas Rest Areas allow overnight camping and I am sure you could stretch that if you wanted. Most have designated parking away from Truck Parking.
Maybe he will read this (he book marked my blog) and leave a comment.