Monday, December 29, 2014

Traveling, For the OCD...

So, we went north for the holidays this year. I had kept radio silence for op-sec reasons - since I no longer have a retired police officer with a vested interest next door, I figured it was best not to mention we'd be out of state for a week... We made arrangements with a friend to pick up the mail, and had lights on a timer, so we were pretty well covered.

Of course, that didn't stop me from thinking of the nine million things that can go horribly, horribly wrong in the course of a week...

As we turned into the subdivision, it hit me that I had a hierarchy of assessing how things held up in our absence:

1. The house is still standing - it didn't burn to the ground while we were gone.
2. The front door is intact - we didn't have a home invasion.
3. We have power.
4. Walking in, there's no water flowing through the house.
5. TV/computer/etc. are still where they're supposed to be.

Most items are obviously outside of my control; I suppose we could shut off the water and gas mains before we left  and shut down the power, but that's a little extreme for something that normally isn't a problem. The wildcard is a burglary; we've taken steps to mitigate the chance of that, like keeping mum on vacation plans, having a security system and locking all doors and windows.

Fear of something happening isn't so big that it keeps us from leaving the house, that's borderline paranoia. When you're 500 miles from home, though, and things are quiet, you starting revisiting all the horror stories you've ever heard: the toilet that mysteriously started running and flooded the house; the electrical short that caused a spark and initiated a fire, etc.

What it does make you revisit, though, is having access to things like insurance policies, home furnishing records, etc. in places other than a hard copy file. Inexpensive flash drives mean you can keep scans of all vital records close at hand without relying on internet security - might not be a bad idea to have a "master file" on a drive you keep on your keychain.

These are the things I think of when sleeping on a pull-out couch...

That is all.

4 comments:

Old NFO said...

That last IS a good idea...

Ted said...

2 words. ........

Alarm system. The new wireless ones are easy to DIY. Have an app to notify you of things like water leaks and such as well as the usual stuff.

Anonymous said...

Also encrypt that thumb drive in case it is lost!

THOTpolice

Oddball said...

This is actually one of the benefits of me using a computer at home as an ssh server. I can connect to it, and I can tell myself 1. there's power and internet connection at my house, 2. the house is still standing, and 3. the house probably didn't get robbed.

This was very important for me to know when my town got hit badly by a "once in a thousand years" level flood a few years back and I was visiting family 500+ miles away.