Monday, January 13, 2014

And the cycle of giving goes round and round

As I was researching what I’d need for this van life of mine, people kept mentioning water storage. The more the better. The seven-gallon Aqua-Tainer jug got frequent mentions. I bought two of them. Then, as I built out my van, it became clear I’d have room for only one of them.

I filled the jug with seven gallons of tasty spring water and loaded it in the van. I hauled it from one coast to the other and all around the West. Until this morning. That’s when I finally realized I’d used the seven-gallon jug only when I felt guilty for not having used it. It had been much easier handling and refilling ordinary one-gallon water jugs. And the smaller jugs fit easily under my bed instead of taking up valuable “hallway” space.

I put the seven-gallon beast, with about six gallons of water in it, on the free stuff tarp. Someone took it.

Meanwhile, someone had given another van dweller two milk crates. The new owner of the used crates didn’t really need them but figured he’d find someone who did. That’s when I happened along. 

“You know, I’ve been thinking about getting one,” I said. “Let me see if it will work for what I have in mind.”

“No problem. If not, just put it on the free stuff tarp.”

I took the milk crate to my van. It fit perfectly into the space once occupied by the seven-gallon water jug. And it easily held everything (and more) I’d been keeping in a five-gallon utility bucket next to the seven-gallon jug. Rectangular things are more space-efficient than cylindrical ones. Excellent.

So I put the five-gallon bucket on the free stuff tarp.

“Hey, that’s exactly what I need,” said a guy who was putting a medium sized plastic storage container on the free stuff tarp. He went away happy with the bucket. His container will probably be exactly what someone else needs.

And so it goes.

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