Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Practice before disaster strikes.

after hurricane Sandy
     Life without electricity will look very different than today's life with electronic gadgets.  Everyday we flip switches, turn dials, click buttons and go on with life.  As preppers we take this into consideration.  We think we know what to expect and how to prep for it.  Nope.

     There are millions of people around the globe who live in the light of day.  They have no choice.  They have no electricity.  They get up with the sun and spend their day working to survive.  They walk miles to the source of water and filling whatever they can carry, they continue to toil toward survival.  They make their own shelter and repair it daily if needed.  They pray to their gods to protect their shelters from vermin, insects and weather.  They continue to work to eat.  

     The sun goes down and they and whatever animals they may have come inside to wait through the night for the return of the sun.  If they have a flashlight or kerosene lantern, they may read or study for their school exams.  It's dark.  What else is there to do?

     A single solar panel can change the life of an entire village.  It can provide enough light to educate the young in the evening after chores.  It can cut down the need to waste hours a day to travel to the next village to charge a radio battery.  Electricity can give news, warnings, information, education, and entertainment.  

     Until disaster strikes, few Americans know what life is without electricity.  Preppers who mean to survive, take a day or a weekend to drill.  We turn off the power at the box and sweat it out.  This is not a camping vacation.  This is a night when you just turn it off.  Charging up the cell phone so you don't miss a call is cheating a bit.  If you turn off the power and go to bed knowing you will not turn it back on for at least 24 hours, it's a drill.  

     Step one of a Prep through Practice: In the daylight you go through your prep supplies making your home ready for the night.  You prepare your meals over open flame or try out those MREs you've been stashing. 

       Turn off the power and live in the sun.  Make a list of things you would have to do that could only be done in daylight like; gardening, hunting, fishing, gathering supplies like water.  

     A practice weekend can help you work out the bugs in your bug out bag. As you practice and get better at living without power, you may try to get home from work without your car.  I would not begrudge you a cell phone to opt out.  You will beat yourself up later but I won't say don't call for help if you can.  Just try again, when you have worked out the bugs.

     After a weekend without electricity, you might want to further your skills by taking that long camping trip to practice fire skills or building shelter skill.  I like to get out to remember what it's like to be quiet.  

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