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Always carry water. Dehydration gives you a horrible headache and impaired judgement. There's also the possibility that you may need to hide from someone and will be stuck somewhere for some time. I have at least one bottle on my person when I explore, more in summer.

It is best to explore with someone else but if a solo explore is unavoidable, make sure that someone on the outside knows where you are just in case you get into difficulties. I will always text the precise location to someone and often, will say that I will text back in a couple of hours. If you are like me, you will finish your text with something cheerful like "here's where to find the body if you hear nothing." :P

Other people use derelict buildings such as drug users, the homeless and those who fall into both categories. Whilst you are best to avoid them, there's always a chance that you will round the corner and find yourself faced with a situation that makes you think "shit cakes - coma white alert!*" Just in case you are in this situation, always be polite and courteous to the people you come across -They are often flattered to be spoken to as humans and it will diffuse a lot. You may want to consider carrying a small amount of appeasement money for in case they ask for change and in carrying a small offering, you may take their attention from whatever other goodies you may be packing. Just as some homeless people do, carry your "sacrifice money" in a separate place to larger sums of money or credit/debit cards on outer clothing - that way, you can use the "I only have this" line confidently and with evidence.  They may also enjoy a peace offering of cigarettes if you smoke or chocolate bars along with some change. Not only will this potentially save you from being beaten and left, they may be kind enough to warn you about damage in the floors or tell you about interesting features. 

Many people in the urbex community are loveable souls but sadly, there is a horrible epidemic that makes some wedge their heads in tight places that not even the best proctologist can free them from. Unfortunately there appears to be no cure for this malady and sadly, it can even happen to people you have known for a while. If you are new to this wonderful hobby, please be aware that you will probably come across some people who you would happily leave face down in a ditch.

Stop and just enjoy the moment and the environment - really, take the time to savour the place with all your senses (okay, not taste). It really is worth treasuring the drip drip of leakage, wind through the corridors, glass under your feet, the visual beauty and that gorgeous damp scent. It makes comforting thoughts and memories you can return to time and time again. :)

*Coma White is a Marilyn Manson song about drug use. I will use the words "coma white" to pertain to the presence of the evidence of drug use. Example sentence: "That end room is looking a bit coma white."

 

 

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I carry coffee

Fraggs carries brown sugar for some reason 

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