Vans are small spaces and control panels cast a LOT of light! Those little LED lights on switches, control panels, and microwaves will light up the entire interior of the van. Not so great for sleeping. On top of all that is the fact that the Maxxair fan lids are almost transparent so sunlight in the morning comes right through. I was covering up the light on the Victron Multiplus control panel with my jacket sleeve from the coat hook to the pull for the blind - hardly convenient (especially when you're half asleep and the sleeve falls away.)
Big windows are very nice to have... however they do take up wall space! The challenge with that is when sitting in the dining room, there's nothing to lean back against like in a regular chair/seat. Another problem was when the blinds were down and people would lean back; the slider handle (quite sharp edges) would get pressed into the blinds. It would take no time at all for a cut in the blind to form. After pondering what to do about these issues, I figured a seat rail in the window opening would be a good solution. Sure we would sacrifice a bit of the view but there would still be plenty of window to look out of. A piece of stair bull nose was perfect for the job.
Calvin here - after spending almost 33 years in education as a high school teacher, elementary teacher, and elementary administrator, it was time to retire! I did so happily and with no regrets; it was a terrific and fulfilling career. I do enjoy building projects as the design and building process is very therapeutic and you see a completed functional product in the end. Now to combine the build with another of Angela's and my passions - travel - is something we're really looking forward to.