Posts by plantgirl

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UKHippy is a long running online community and of likeminded people exploring all interpretations on what it means to be living an alternative lifestyle -- we welcome discussions on everything related to sustainability, the environment, alternative spirituality, music, festivals, politics and more -- membership of this website is free but supported by the community.

    Cities are strange, alien places to me, so it suits me well to stay well away! I went to London a few years ago, found it very strange to be hemmed in by so many tall buildings all day, and I made everyone look at me strangely when I spotted the moon between the buildings and shouted "look! the moon!!!" seriously, it was the only thing I recognised and I got quite excited about it....

    My mind does sometimes race at night, but it's not an all consuming fear and the happiness van dwelling brings outweighs it by far :D

    Its more about the fear of senseless violence in cities. I know someone who ended up sleeping rough in South London. He got beaten up several times for no apparant motive by groups of young men for their own entertainment. Plus he knew a lot of people who

    faced violence every night,

    Thats why you see people sleeping out during the day in London, they are too frightened to sleep at night on their own.

    :( It puts things into perspective, doesn't it? There's me jittering about the remote chances of things happening, yet there are those who sadly it's part of their everyday life. It's scary how horrible people can be to each other (which is, I guess, what freaks me out about people sometimes....)

    I went over to Ireland last summer, to visit some family and have a look about on the west coast, and before I went I thought I'd research online for what things were like regarding parking up at night.

    I read these horror stories (trust me to find them and focus on them....) about gangs targeting motorhomes parked up in remote spots, at night. This doesn't make it ok at all, but from what I gathered it was expensive, fully kitted out motorhomes, and presumably tourists with iphones and holiday cash. It did somewhat detract from the idyllic impression I'd had of the west coast still and I didn't stay anywhere remote!

    Still, it was lovely and idyllic (and windy!) when I got there and the only bother I had was with tailgaters- even the lorries! The Irish don't seem to do plodding vans.....

    I'm not sure I could ever learn to bark!! But I can scream pretty loud- especially if there were zombies outside....

    I guess the beauty of moving on all the time, and especially when arriving late, is that no-one knows who is in the van, or how many, and that must be a pretty good deterrent. There could be several ogres, rather than one elf :-D

    Parked up at Westwoods I was woken early in the morning by a horrendous sound much like steel being ripped , I cautiously shone my torch around and found it was a Pheasant.I dont think that I have ever heard one before....

    I did the same once with lapwing.....couldn't work out what was making the strange alien noises!!

    Didnt know if my pick axe handle would of worked on zombies :-)

    That would have surprised them if you had come flying out armed and dangerous!

    I've been reading a book that has a really creepy part featuring zombies- I think I would have keeled over in terror if I had been reading that and then looked outside to see them!

    The only weird experience I've had so far was some kids (well, presumably kids!) burning out a car down the road from where I was (at least it wasn't next to I have to give them that). It had seemed a nice spot but I hadn't realised quite how near the town I was (I'm learning every day.....). I was woken around midnight by a series of loud, slightly metallic bangs and had an anxious few minutes trying to listen and figure out if it was a psychopath on the loose smashing things up or something else! When I finally plucked up the courage to take a look it all became obvious...

    Fortunately a series of fire engines then turned up and sorted things out, although they then stood about talking loudly for ages, I think they were enjoying a bit of a get together!!

    So it was all fine in the end, but as with other nights where my brain started whirring, it made me think what would I actually do in a crisis. I have lots of ideas now though :D I'm not sure about a crossbow though- think it might be difficult to justify possession of one of those!

    wow thanks everyone for the ideas :D

    I'm glad I asked, it's definately better to have a plan A and B rather than just sit worrying when I hear a noise and the brain goes into overdrive!

    I like the torch idea a lot, and some spray of some sort! The radio on whilst out is a good one too, I have been putting the blinds down whilst I've been out so that no-one can tell if anyone is in there or not (I started doing that after I watched someone peering in through the window of the van when I was walking back to it, I think they were just being nosey but still, shows people do look)

    I like the idea too of finding a friendly landowner and having somewhere to park up for a while in return for some work. I did a while ago look at the woofers website (took me a while to remember what it was called-.....I knew it was something to do with dogs....I nearly said doggers but realised that couldnt be right :o) but I think it's based on live-in accomodation so the hours you are asked to do are pretty much full-time.

    Just after some tips from those of you who have been van dwelling for a while! Main thing in my mind is the coming winter, most of the places I have parked up so far have had a motorhome or another van and although it probably doesn't make much difference, it's felt reassuring to have someone else around.

    I do go on my gut feeling with parking up, and so far it's been fine but just sometimes my mind goes a bit overactive and I start worrying at night- I'm sure it will get better with time and I try and tell myself what can really happen, after all I'm locked in my van, but still!

    I have internal windscreen blinds and try to park so I could leave quickly if I had to- but any other advice?

    Thank you :D

    Hi plantgirl and welcome!

    I'm intrigued by your "stuck" comment and wondered if it echoed my own experience recently? Are you stuck as in you can't get out of your situation or is it something else? Hope you don't mind me asking. :)

    Hi Oblongdot (and hello to everyone else who has said 'hi' :-D

    Yes, that's exactly it- I spent too long trying to be what I thought I 'should' be, and what everyone else seemed to want me to be, and it has only bought me unhappiness at worst and restlessness at best. I spent years puzzling over why I wasn't happy with the things that were supposed to make me happy but gradually things became clearer. I think age helps- the longer you are here, the better you know yourself! If only I knew what I knew now, 20 years ago but better late than never.

    But regarding the stuck- it's more complicated than this but it's mainly that I have children and so it becomes very hard to go very far or change much. But, I keep hoping and looking for solutions that keeps everyone happy and try and be patient! :-)

    Thank you :) I've had a look for any similar threads and couldn't find anything. It's interesting though how you quickly become quite inventive with using water when you've only got a small amount!

    Great, thank you! I'm glad it was not just me missing something obvious, but I'm sorry for all that it's not straightforward. What a crazy world!

    do you boil the water you find (air pump etc) for hot drinks or use bottled water for hot drinks too?

    This is just the thread I've been looking for :D

    This might sound silly but where do you find water! I'm new to off grid van life, everything else is going ok but I'm struggling to find places to fill up my water containers (I don't have a big underslung tank.... just removable containers). The other day I seemed to spend most of the day wondering where to get water! I asked at a garage, they said they didn't have drinking water, the public loos had a tap outside but it didn't have a handle (maybe I need a set of pliers?!), the village hall didn't have an outside tap and was shut, I chickened out of seeing if there was one on the side of the church (starting to look suspicious by this point!). I saw a tap and hosepipe at the side of someone's house but it was a really fancy looking place (is that judgemental?!) and I lost my nerve with that too.

    I have to admit to getting a bit pissed off. Once upon a time water was a free, communal resource. What happened to that?! But then I guess the same could be said for land, and that's even worse :(

    In the end I gave up and found a campsite. It was that or go hiking into the hills and find a clean spring!

    Would love to know what everyone else does, and if I'm being a bit daft and missing something obvious ^^

    Hi Everyone :-)

    I have to confess to being a lurker for some time!!! I've enjoyed reading posts, but never got round to joining until now, when I have a question! (off to see where to post it in a min!)

    I'm a nomadic soul gradually trying to extract myself from the treadmill of our crazy society- unfortunately I realised too late quite how stuck I was with it all! Still, I think I am on the right path now, or at least a better one....:insane: