IFN wants to know: What is your biggest fear?
Six weeks before I was to graduate from High School, my mother
dislocated my jaw, and kicked me out of the house.
A friend found me a place to stay in town, but that house turned out to be dangerous. I was raped within the week. (back in those days, asleep
and unmarried = implied consent, so there was no point in reporting.)
It was not impossible to find places to clean up, or even to find food, but I had nowhere to stay during the night. So I started looking for safe places to hide.
There was a small river nearby, and twice I thought I'd found a choice spot to hide out. With a childhood of practice playing Army under my young belt, I was quite adept at making "forts" - a skill that paid off. But both camps were soon appropriated by drunk cowjocks and partying rednecks.
I soon found out that the safest place to sleep was under parked cars. I chose them specially. I made note of who went to work when, and rotated my spots according to the neighborhood's commuting schedules. Barring oil leaks, the undersides of cars are clean. No bugs. And they're reasonably safe. Wandering sociopaths don't think to look under cars for prey.
Off and on, I spent most of that summer sleeping unprotected, and I've never forgotten what it's like not knowing for certain where I'll be staying, or if I'll be safe. To this day, I cannot walk down a street without scouting for possible hideaways, in case the need should arise.