The Dangers of City Hoboing

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I hadn’t been able to pick up my laundry from my storage unit and thus, for the first time in months, decided to head south Saturday morning instead of Friday night. I work south of town most Saturdays and my favorite laundromat is located in the same area, so I usually spent Friday night at a parking lot down there, go to work, and then do my laundry nearby.

I checked the local news yesterday and the first picture that popped up caught my eye. “Ha, that looks like one of my spots”, I thought. The realization hit me several seconds later. The picture that accompanied a report regarding a fatal shooting on Friday night was MY SPOT. No, I don’t mean it was close by or just in the same parking lot. The shooting happened exactly in the spot I would have been parked in, if I had followed my usual routine.

Naturally, hundreds of questions raced through my mind. Would I have noticed a disturbance prior to the shooting and left? Would the police have tracked me down as a witness? Would the person have parked somewhere else if I had been there? Could I have gotten hurt or killed that night?

My friends, I decided a few years ago to find a balance between nature and society, and have lived pretty well for the most part. However, everything comes with a price and the price I am paying to spend some of my time within society, sometimes seems too high to bear. Sometimes I want to simply leave all of it behind. Screw people, screw society, and most of all screw all this damn hate. I will be moving this summer and may be able to park on a friend’s property from then on. That would certainly be nice.

Take care and stay safe!

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9 thoughts on “The Dangers of City Hoboing

  1. I don’t know whether your lifestyle would accommodate a dog, but my dog has saved me from several “might have been me” scenarios. I’m glad you’re safe. Everything has its hazards, and women camping alone can usually sniff them out and avoid them. Often it’s something that looks like chance, but what you just avoided smacks of good karma…whatever you’re doing, keep it up! And get a dog.

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  2. Wow! That’s heavy.

    Urban camping is the only kind I have done in several years. I have had some strange experiences doing it. Sleeping in an alley and waking to a stranger poking through our belongings…. etc… It is extremely vulnerable.

    I live in a very nice area. I have a respectable home in a respectable part of town. We are not high-end, but some of those neighborhoods are fairly close. And just yesterday, I was driving by a fine home about 4 blocks away that had all the front windows smashed out. There was cardboard patching up the openings. Surely a temporary fix. But it was stunning to see in this location.

    Honestly, I think “safety” is an illusion. It sells. I turn away ADT home security sales people all the time. Odds are in my favor, but every measure I might take has a dark side. For instance, I might own a gun, but then my kids might shoot me with it (even by accident) which means I presented the danger in an effort to feel safe. Ha.

    The dog is a good idea if that can fit into your life. A dog will stick by ya til death do part ya. But of course, hoboing with a dog presents challenges upon challenges.

    I am glad you are ok.

    X

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    • Yes, there is no such thing as absolute safety. In regards to the dog idea, I have no way of caring for one being a full-time student and working. Its a bummer, especially considering that I love animals, but it ain’t happening any time soon. Take care!

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  3. Wow!!! That is more than a coincidence. It wasn’t your time or you have someone looking out for you. I’m glad you’re safe and look forward to reading your adventures as I barely begin mine! đŸ™‚

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  4. I’ll add my gratitude that you were “protected” from harm … whether it came from fate, chance, guardian angel or whatever.

    I think the vast majority of us live an illusion. We feel we are in control of our lives when the reality is that “stuff” happens. I know of dozens of situations were I’ve skirted harm just by the happenstance of good timing:

    1) My ex and I used to take a holiday weekend in San Francisco. On year, we had to move our reservations up a week because of a business conflict. The night we were originally going to stay there, the hotel caught fire: our wing sustained heavy damage and 3 people were killed. Had the conflict not arisen, we would have been in the middle of it.

    2) We visited some collectible shops in downtown Santa Cruz one Sunday. We had brought her son to the boardwalk with some friends and decided to venture over to the shops. As we were driving away, she asked, “Do you think it’s okay that we’re leaving them at the boardwalk?”, to which I replied, “I think so … I mean, he’s a smart kid, there are cops around if he felt he needed help. What could really go wrong?”

    Exactly 48 hours after we were in those shops, they were destroyed by the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Six people died in their collapse. A two day difference … which in geological terms is an instant.

    3) My last significant other and I were walking back to our car after seeing a Broadway show in 2010. We walked right by the van and turned a corner perhaps 15 seconds after it was discovered to have had a bomb inside (the infamous failed Times Square bomb plot). I remember the van because I was upset that it was parked in a No-parking zone and said to her, “Here comes a cop on horseback – hopefully he gets that van towed!” This was the same cop the vendors notified about smoke coming out of the car … literally seconds after we turned a corner and were out of sight from what transpired afterwards. The bomb didn’t go off … but what if it had?

    These are just a few. There have been others. I guess what I’m trying to say is that things can change in a second. We think we’re in control, but we’re not. “Live each day as if it were your last,” has a different meaning to me when I think about those incidents. You just never know.

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