As a nomad, I live light, both in terms of possession and debt. I cannot afford to be lacksidasical with baggage of any form, and as I grow older, I shun more and more the offer of others to give me possession, or indebt me by even offering gifts.
I understand it’s frustrating for them to want to give to me and for me to push back, and I cannot make more clear how very grateful I am for their generous hearts. I am touched and warmed by their offers, but it makes the onus of my litepack lifestyle no lighter.
From friends, family and other colleagues, I do not want gifts of any greater merit than meals and the offer of a place to stay in my travels. As a nomad, that is a measure of generosity that meets me where I need it, and I hope in every way and at every turn that I might return that favor as I may when the need arises according to the needs of my friends. For me to offer to others the very gifts I shun is a matter meeting their perceptions of generosity, where my perceptions differ. Also, my giving of gifts still satisfies my personal need for a light footprint, as money is a tool for me and the giving of items a method of personal satisfaction in the giving, itself.
In a more specific example, as I deploy overseas, I don’t want care packages. I don’t want people to go out of their way to send me something I do not need. I will not need super niceties from back home for several reasons. First, leaving comforts on a regular basis refreshes my appreciation of them and reminds me that they are, in fact, niceties, not necessities. Maintaining that frame of mind is more important to me than giving others the satisfaction of giving me gifts.
In other words, my focus on my lifestyle is more important than making other people feel better about giving me a gift. The only foundational argument I can offer is that if I permitted or encouraged others to give to me while still maintained my litepack lifestyle, I could in no good conscience so freely give away what was given to me, especially if it was given to me, specifically.
“How’re you enjoying (that thing I bought you)?”
“Oh, I gave it away the next day, I don’t keep more than my happy minimum, but thanks for giving me something, anyway!”
Does that make sense?
Now, were I to need something and someone generously provided it for me, I would keep it, and my generosity would remain just as soundly, but that gift connects far more to me since it satisfies a very particular need or passion.
Secondly, I’m deploying to somewhere that does not have all the niceties of my homeland. Were those niceties so important to me, I would have stayed home in easy reach of them.
Lastly, if there is something overseas that I lack or otherwise desire to possess, I will contract with a particular friend to satisfy that need or desire and no more, avoiding excess and the need to dispose of it.
When it comes to the future woman I may marry, the rules change, not for the accumulation of things– something I will continue to avoid as possible — but also for the nature of its indebtedness. Indebting myself to others comes with a particular cost of which I attempt to remain keen, despite my general forgetfulness. With the woman I would marry, however, it would be no different than being indebted to myself. As we would pursue the merger of our lives, the service performed to each other is a selfless benefit of ourselves, something we forget when in thought we exclude our special one from our personal goals in life.
What does all this ultimately mean? It means I want little more than your love, companionship and respect. Should I need or want something from you, I will ask with clear understanding that even if I never can return your gift in kind, your generosity will not be forgotten; furthermore that I would rather avoid the disposal of that generosity to satisfy the needs of my lifestyle.
I don’t think I can ask for more, or have anything further to say on it.