Staying Organized and My Neuroses

My van was turning into a wreck with all my clothes.  Not only all the clothes I already owned but 7 items I picked up at an estate sale (for $1 each!) and a huge stack of things a friend gave me.  I also had my sleeping bag and FOUR more blankets in there.

I know I’m going to make myself sound immature and neurotic making such a big deal about this but…well whatever…this is who I am right now.   I made a decision to only keep two changes of clothes in the van and to get rid of (put in storage) at least two of the blankets.  I did this to restore my sanity.  I can’t stand living in a mess. I also don’t want people to realize I’m living in my van, for safety reasons and to protect the feelings of people I care about.  This decision was/is close to excruciating for me to make and carry out though.

I’m insecure about having my clothes and blankets locked up.  From 9pm til 6am I won’t have access to them at all.  The rest of the time, I will have access but I will have to punch a code to get into the storage facility.  The people that work there will know every time I’m there, there are cameras everywhere too.  Now normally I don’t worry about things like that.  I’m not paranoid.  Being “homeless” though, I don’t want the wrong person to know my situation.  I’m sure going to the storage place every other day will be a dead give-away.  What if one of the employees (there are 3 I’ve seen) follows me “home”?  What if one of the other homeless customers (I’ve seen a couple there…their smell gives them away!) sees me too often and gives me a problem?

On the other hand, in some ways the storage place is cool.  Generally there aren’t many people there.  I can straighten out my van, take stuff in and out and pretty much, only the people that work there will notice.  I don’t do any straightening out of my van in residential neighborhoods and very little in  parking lots because I’m afraid of drawing the wrong sort of attention.  So it’s kind of a good spot.

Like I said, I know I sound a little crazy but when you are a woman on her own, living out of her van, you can’t be naive.  MOST people around here are too caught up in their own lives to worry about some homeless chick, so it’s not the general public I worry about.  It’s that one crazy person though, that I have to concern myself with.  And I don’t know which person it is.

But anyway, the deal is done….my van looks MUCH better and I’m going to give this a try.  I guess I can always go back to the old way of doing things if this way seems too dangerous.

PS.  Now my storage space is a mess!

About Maureen, Living in a Van

I'm a free-sleeper living in a van in the prettiest part of the world. I do this partly due to financial circumstances and partly because I love a good adventure.
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11 Responses to Staying Organized and My Neuroses

  1. Do you have enough money to store your stuff at two different storage units across town from each other? Maybe have two smaller storage places instead of one big one. Just an idea. That’s what I would do if I were concerned with other people keeping up with my movement. Divide up the storage locations to as many as I could afford.

    • Maureen says:

      The cost of storage here is ridiculous. I’m paying $78 a month for a 5 x 5 space that I share with my adult daughter. This includes required insurance. I don’t want to pay anymore. Keep the ideas coming though because you have some good ones!

  2. Ryu says:

    Well, there’s nothing that says you have to store them in a storage place. Many homeless people practice “caching” or hiding stuff in places. You have an entire city! Surely you can come up with a few places that are out of sight that you may visit every couple days.

    • I was thinking that, too, Ryan. But, she would have to have some woods knowledge and a shovel or find a hollow tree or stump someplace. I’ve read books on cached goods in the woods and it has to be protected from water, mold, digging animals, other people who will see the sunken spot where the item is buried and the rains have made the hole depress a bit (like an old grave). The book recommended going out between midnight and 3:00 AM on a Sunday or Monday night when there is less of a chance to be spotted by Farmer Brown, Poacher Pete, or another person snooping around like a game warden.

      • Ryu says:

        I do see that Maureen lives in So Cal. That handles the water and insect problem right away.

        I am a bit of a surivalist, and I can say that many books are overly paranoid. Especially about the desert. The public believes them to be death traps, full of coyotes, javalina, scorpions, snakes and other critters.

        It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a real woods. But out in the chapparal there are man sized creosote bushes and it’s not just sand and dirt out there. Most people are not that observant and to be frank, they don’t care. It is a numbers game and most of time this observation will hold.

    • Maureen says:

      Now THERE’S an interesting thought!

  3. Maureen says:

    Oh that’s horrible! I’m so sorry.

    I get most of my stuff really cheap or free but it takes time to get it and I would be bummed out if it all disappeared at once. Of course, storage units get robbed too from time to time.

    Stuff’s replaceable though eh?

    When I go to the storage this week, I’m going to get rid of the clothes I never wear. I thought I would wear some of them, but then I got clothes I liked better so stopped wearing the first ones…I feel so guilty getting rid of things though even if I got them for free…will try to get the stuff over to the Goodwill so I don’t feel as bad.

  4. Iveco Camper says:

    Just thought I’d say hi! Just found your blog via the yahoo groups..

    There’s nothing like having a place for everything to keep things tidy although I can relate to your paranoia. From my perspective, less stuff means fewer things to worry about! I say this after recently getting my van broken into and having most of my possessions stolen.

    • Maureen says:

      The comment below is for you…I just put it in the wrong spot. I’m also going to add you to my blogroll. Your blog looks very interesting!

      • Iveco Camper says:

        Ahoy! Yeah, getting stuff stolen sucked big time and set us back a little but as you say, it’s all replaceable and I’ve since beefed up the security a little and replaced the broken doors! 🙂

        Thanks for your comment about adding my site to your blogroll, I’m way behind with the blog and hove to catch up soon and will ensure I do the same! 🙂

        I’m glad to have find another interesting blog, you’ve got another regular reader here.

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