Friday, September 14, 2018

Leaving it all behind

There's an old Chinese proverb that goes something like this: in a long life a man should be prepared to leave all their possessions behind and flee at least twice. It was written during a turbulent time in Chinese history. War lords fought for territory and often the only wise thing to do was to flee.

Of course, that comes to mind due to the evacuations caused by hurricane Florence. At least people had time to plan their escape. Yesterday in Massachusetts problems with natural gas lines caused multiple explosions and fires. People had to evacuate immediately.

You don't need a major disaster to lose all your property. Something as simple as unemployment or divorce can cause a person to lose all their stuff.

The thing to keep in mind is that it's just stuff. Yes, it's painful to lose everything you've worked hard for. It hurts to lose personal items and mementos. Still, better to lose stuff than your life. Too often people have refused to evacuate or even gone back into burning buildings for material things. When I was a firefighter I once had to have police haul someone away to keep them out of their burning house.

When you have to abandon everything, it's good to have solid relationships: friends and family you can count on. It's also good to have skills. The knowledge in your head is extremely portable. When pursuing material things, never neglect relationships and skills.



  1. You're right, it's just "stuff". Yes, I would be sad to lose some things, especially family photos. But, it's just stuff.

    1. One has to stay focused on what's really important.

  2. Kind of Off topic here.
    There are a ton of good boat deals out there right now. Here is one you could use for a season and walk away from/give away if you had to.

    1. Boats are always on-topic.

      That's a decent deal on a capable boat. This is the time of year when people are looking to avoid winter storage fees.