However much it might not become a proud van-driving alpha male – someone who has had three wives in the past decade, used to box for the county and once was on the youth books of not one but two professional football clubs – I have to admit that I have a mortal fear of being left stranded in the van.
Call it a phobia or just call it sensible, you decide, I spend so much time driving my Vauxhall Vivaro across some of the remoter parts of Wales and Scotland, including Snowdon and the Hebrides, that perhaps my single greatest fear in life is being stuck and isolated in bad weather conditions with nothing but a malfunctioning commercial vehicle to keep me company.
The list of my colleagues' fears ranges from such traumas as being killed in collision with an HGV to relative inconveniences such as being priced out of the van insurance market, so you can understand that in comparison my van related phobias might seem, well, a little girly.
I get a lot of stick from the lads about it. "How many torches have you got with you today, John?" they'll ask, facetiously, often adding, "And how many batteries have you got for those torches? Just in case, like."
"Got your space food, John? Never know you might end up on the moon – think I saw a story like that in the Daily Sport once, a van photographed nose-down in a crater. These days anything can happen."
"Got a fortnight's supply of water? Never know, could take a wrong turn and, bang, you're in the middle of the Sahara."
Yes, I do have multiple torches with multiple batteries, just in case! Yes, I do have three boxes of strawberry-flavoured space ice-cream, just in case! Yes, I do have a fortnight's supply of water, just in case!
Hey, I even have thermal underwear, a change of pants, a change of socks, a box-set of Jeffrey Archer novels, a more than usually well-endowed first-aid kit and a precious family photo album!
But, after Swedish police recently discovered a man who'd been trapped in his car under snow for more than two months I'm beginning to feel rather smug – seems the last laugh's not on me after all. Police spokespeople say he was in "bad shape", "nearly starving", and "barely able to speak."
I don't want to sound insensitive, but that wouldn't have happened to me. I mean compare us –I've got multiple insurance policies stocked throughout my van. I'm well-prepared, me.