This is one of a series of stories we are sharing to show what’s inside CubeSmart. You not only get a peek inside our customer’s storage unit, but also a peek inside what is important to them. Thank you to Ronald, a customer of our CubeSmart store in Cutler Bay, FL, for sharing his story with us.
Ronald Carter, an older gentleman, arrived dressed in black slacks, white dress shirt, and black shoes; after having just attended a funeral for a church woman who passed from cancer. He said that this is not his normal attire.
Ronald is a now retired church administrator who served as an operations manager for a congregation of 1,500 members. Nowadays, he finds himself working alongside his wife of 48 years in their event decorating business, Anointed Hands. He reports that his wife is the one with the talent for decorating and wanted to make beautiful decorations accessible for those who have less money to spend, hence their tagline of "Affordable Luxury."
His wife is native-born to South Florida. He was also born in Florida, Orlando to be exact. However, he was not raised there. His father, who was born in North Carolina, was in the military and was transferred a lot. South Florida was his last placement in 1963, and they decided to stay as they liked the sunny climate.
The hot and humid climate of South Florida might make it a wonderful place to settle down, but it's also detrimental to the silk flowers that Ronald's wife uses to decorate event venues. Ronald, who handles the business side of things, says that unlike fresh flowers, the silk flowers can be used again and again which allows them to pass along the savings to their customers. They use their climate-controlled unit at 19395 SW 106th Ave, Cutler Bay, FL 33157 to store these silk flowers and other event supplies, which could become easily damaged in the home.
Ronald says that he comes to his unit for more than just storage space. He visits at least once a month to pay his bill and chat with the staff. He says, "The people here are what make it. I hate talking to people through computers. CubeSmart has a website, but I prefer to come in to pay my bill so I can talk to the people. I've been a customer for over 10 years and never bothered looking anywhere else for storage. I have no idea of the rates around for other storage units. They are personable here. I enjoy chatting with the humans here. Pat, Carmen and now Raysa. It's more than just a storage facility. These people care about me. I know administration. And I know that to these people, it's more than just a business."
Ronald reports having a Professional Administration Degree, which he used in his previous role. Before that, he was a teacher and also worked with juvenile offenders, many of them "survival criminals." He tells an example story of one of his clients whose mother was a prostitute and would leave them by a dumpster anywhere from two hours to two days. He stole car radios and had adult crackheads pawn them, so he could get money to feed his siblings. Ronald says these types of criminals are the kind that can be rehabilitated when given a second chance. It's why he got into the ministry so that he could help give people their second chance.
He has a grandfatherly sense about him, revealing that he has two adult kids and one granddaughter that he "spoils rotten." He says, "My daughter doesn't understand, but my son-in-law does. Everybody has a purpose. My purpose is to spoil her rotten while she is with me. And then for her parents to fix her back up when she comes home. I call it grandparents' privilege."
We’d love to hear how self storage positively impacted your life. Share your #HumansofSelfStorage storage in the comments.