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Old 12-17-2007, 06:35 PM   #1
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This weekend Lori and I packed-up our 1 bedroom apartment and moved it down to a cargo container located in the not-so-nice parts of Long Beach. We are now officially living on board our boat.

HOWEVER, we now have two large storage payments to make each month. Knowing that we have so much STUFF still sitting on land is troubling me greatly. Approximately 95% of which is Lori’s. It has become a very sensitive topic and each time I mention that we need to eliminate most, if not all storage, I get the look of death. I don’t know if she is going to be able to let go of boxes full of shoes, dresses, sewing material, kitchen ware, collectables, etc etc. She seems terrified of the thought.

I tried to lead by example and trucked nearly all of my suits, shoes, clothes to goodwill. She couldn’t believe that I was simply able to give it all away. I told her that if I haven’t worn it or used it in a year…it is gone.

Does anybody out there have some suggestions for dealing with storage? Should we keep a storage unit while cruising? It seems like a waste of money to me.
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:00 PM   #2
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When you get back in 5, 10, 15 years, nothing will fit you and everything is out of fashion anyway. So, you will want new "stuff". What about all the storage payments you've made???
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:22 PM   #3
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If you are just living aboard and not cruising then it's easy to justify the stuff. It's there if I want it. Once you leave and go cruising then your perspective on stuff changes. Try and make a deal that says once we leave we look at the stuff after X time and make decisions. In the end lots of stuff can go but it all won't. We got down to about 20 small boxes worth all told which is at a friends.
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:26 PM   #4
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When I left for Africa seven years ago I sold off quite a bit of kit and put what was left into storage. I forget how much I paid for storage but it wasn't cheap and over the five year period I was away I paid more than the stuff was worth. Loking back on it, what I should have done was to have left my papers, photos and a couple of family heirlooms with relatives and turned the rest of the stuff into cash. Even selling it for a fraction of the true value would have been better business than paying more than it was worth for storage.

My advice is to get rid of it.

Aye / Stephen
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:42 PM   #5
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Stephen,

I agree totally! The challenge is getting Lori to see things the same way. We are now paying for 2 storage units at $175/month each. At that rate it doesn't take long for the value proposition to dip into the red.
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:44 PM   #6
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I agree... after my divorce when I was living in a small apartment I had a huge expenseive temperature controlled storage unit for all my household goods that I wasn't using.... it started off as a short term solution and turned into a long term waste... after about two years I had the same realization as stephen... i had paid more for storage than the stuff was worth... so i liquidated it all, have not missed a scrap of it since, and am relieved to be free from the financial encumberance...

at the moment i'm in the same deconstruction you just went through... i just gave away most of my wardrobe, am storing a few nice suits at my dad's, and after the holidays will return to DC to sale every stick of furniture I own as well as my 4 Runner... it's just not worth keeping anything... and I've come to realize that in due course you end up buying and replacing most things anyway... so hanging onto something just to hang onto it is a complete waste.

CONGRATS ON MAKING THE LEAP!!
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:29 PM   #7
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I told her that if I haven’t worn it or used it in a year…it is gone.
Setting off on an extended cruise or not I think that is a very sound policy.

Given the present state of the world we need to rethink our environmental impact. Life is not a race in which the person who accumulates more than anyone else before dying wins. We need to stop buying for the sake of buying and we need to stop accumulating things we don't need.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:29 PM   #8
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I think we need to start a "Compress Your Stuff" campaign...instead of simply reducing Carbon Footprints, we should advocate reducing Human Stuff Footprint.

But seriously, living on a boat gives you an entirely different perspective on the world that we live in. On a boat you only have room for the bare essentials. Enough food for a week, full compliment of tools, water for 14 days, clothing for 7 days, 3-4 pair of shoes, a toilet kit, fishing rods, lures and a coffee press.

I was at the Mall yesterday (my first time in 3 years) and couldn't believe the unlimited selection of crrrap that we humans have come to believe that we need to be happy and fulfilled. Our children are being inundated with consumerism and they throw a fit if they can’t have the latest gadget advertised on television. There is no wonder that we are consuming all the resources of the planet…runaway global warming isn’t what we should be worried about…it’s uncontrolled consumption that is the real threat to our future.
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:35 PM   #9
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I say give it a little time on the boat she will come around and let the things go. Just take a little while then talk to her, maybe say well we lived this long without it.

Good luck,

John
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:37 PM   #10
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Hi Ken,

After less than three months of living aboard, I have now had three BIG chuckouts. I predict Lori will, if left alone with her thoughts on storage, realise on a subsequent trip to the storage unit that it is full of stuff which will be of little use in two years time.

One of my often repeated sayings is "It's only money". To get more money, all we need to do is a little work then, hold out your hand at the end of the week and someone will put money in it. Then we can buy more 'stuff'. I am now awaiting my next trip to my own storage unit as I am determined to get rid of the balance of my horde.

I have arranged for a mate/family to hang my art works, look after some of my electric tools and keep one box each of my 'stuff'.

Cheers

David.
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:41 PM   #11
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On a boat you only have room for the bare essentials. Enough food for a week, full compliment of tools, water for 14 days, clothing for 7 days, 3-4 pair of shoes, a toilet kit, fishing rods, lures and a coffee press.
I don't always remember as much as I should from my physics lessons at school but one thing my physics teacher did say made a big impact upon me. It had nothing to do with physics but a lot to do with philosophy. He said, "never ever accumulate more than you can pack on the back of a motorbike."

I thought that was a bit harsh then and I still think so but not accumulating more than one can fit into a normal size cruising boat is sound.

I have downsized a lot and I am still doing it. In the end I will give away all those non-essential items we contradictorily deem to be so necessary.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 12-17-2007, 11:40 PM   #12
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Having completely moved out of the house this weekend, and both of us onto Imagine again. I looked at the storage unit, and realized once again I have some thinning out to do. Last time I kept valuable silk screens, books about sailing, and bicycles. We flew from SF Ca. to St, Maarten to get the boat. Not a lot of choices of what can be taken with you.

This time there is much more, but in the next several weeks when I get some immediate boat jobs out of the way. I will thin out the belongings in storage. It is not easy to decide what to keep, and what to dispose of for my wife. I already know.

I think the suggestion to let her get use to being on the boat, and she will tire of paying for so much useless stuff that cannot be converted to your new life. Sometimes you can't see the forest for the trees?
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Old 12-18-2007, 01:12 AM   #13
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When we were moving boxes of stuff to the moving truck, Lori made sure that she was with me on each trip to and from. She said that she didn't trust me to make it to the truck and not the dumpster. I must admit that the 3 potted rose bushes would have made it to the dumpster. I told her she should set them free.
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Old 12-18-2007, 05:03 PM   #14
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Last night we were down to the unit to retrieve some things for Melanie. As she was poking around I said to her. That's a lot of stuff. She looked up at everything, and then ignored me. I said nothing else, but I will keep dropping hints.

The last time we moved aboard she had recently moved from the Philippines, and had not had a chance to gather things for the nest. I on the other hand donated every stick of furniture, and my sports car to a children's fund. 2 things I can't part with for now are my 5 tool boxes for my trade, and all of my Tommy Bahama shirts. I gave away about 100 Hawaiian shirts to the donation. Once they were put on display I am sure someone thought they hit the MOTHERLODE of Hawaiian shirts in XL.....LOLOLOL
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