Monday, November 17, 2008

Recent Survival Preps

I think if any survivalist could have their wish, they would like to be able to purchase all their survival supplies at once and never have to worry about getting anything else. Maybe Howard Hughes could do that, but in the real world, we survivalists have jobs, mortgages, car payments and kids that need shoes. So, getting things together takes a while. I suppose the longer Armageddon holds off, the better off I will be. I would like to take this opportunity to share some of my recent survival preps as well as a few things I have on my "To Do" list.
1. Building A Support Network
I recently had lunch with a very good friend. He owns several hundred acres off the beaten path and it has always been an unspoken arrangement that we could fall back there if needed. His place is less than 45 minutes from our house, but driving another 1000 yards back into his property, it could be 1850 again! However, I wanted to sit down with him and discuss something more formal. This was accomplished over excellent Vietnamese food last Friday. We discussed building a "pad site" at a location on his property, consisting of 2 to 3 10'x20' wooden platforms with wood or metal frames that could support large tarps. If we need to Bug Out to a secluded location, we can use these platforms to keep our tents off the ground and to have a covered area for shade and storage. If we never need to Bug Out, we will have a nice area to camp in the fall and winter. He agreed this was a good use of our combined resources and we are going to get started as soon as budget allows. Having someone you can count on is a big part of any prep. No one goes it alone, for very long anyway. I look forward to working with him and providing some safety and security for both our families.
2. Food Preps
I spent a good portion of Saturday afternoon vacuum sealing some of the stored food I have put back. Vacuum sealing decreases bulk and allows you to eliminate unneeded packaging. It also keeps your food fresh and rodent free. I vacuum sealed beans, rice, pasta and sugar. I will continue this week with instant potatoes, dog food and spices. I have discovered that the local Specs Liquor will give you free cardboard boxes. This makes storing and transporting the sealed food much easier. I will also look into some hard plastic containers for the canned goods. My goal is to have 3 months worth of food sealed and ready for use or transport. I also include the original instructions in the bag and write the date purchased or sealed on the outside to make prep easier. I look for dishes that can be made with either water only, or milk, which I have powdered. I also plan to order some #10 cans of freeze dried ground beef and chicken to add to the sealed staples. Pinto beans become chili with some meat, tomato sauce and the correct spices. Pasta becomes Chicken Ala King with canned veggies, Alfredo sauce and chicken. No need to die of food boredom as well as starving to death!
3. Hoarding gas and water
Although gas prices are reasonable (maybe reasonable is not the right word). I have continued with my plan to have 30 gallons of gas ready to go. I filled up 5 gas cans in a nearby town where 2 stores having a gas war have driven the price down to $1.65 a gallon. 2 of the cans were new and 3 were ones I had previously filled and later emptied into the truck during my bi-weekly rotation. I have 6 cans full and ready to go in the garage and will now build a storage rack to recapture some of my floor space. I have 3 six gallon water cans so far and plan to add 6 more for 54 gallons of portable water. 2 Fifty-Five gallon drums will complete my home water preps. I also plan to add some metal hooks under the eves of the house to hang 10'x10' tarps when it rains so that I can use to gather rain water and replenish the barrels as needed.
4. Guns and Ammo
I still have 2 guns on layaway at the Pawn Shop, but I intend to have both out by the January 20th. Why Jan. 20th? No reason at all, in case this ever comes up in court. Seriously, I know the incoming regimes feelings on gun ownership, so I want everything done before they get into power. Do I think they will defy the Supreme Court and walk all over the Bill of Rights? You bet. Everyone else has. I gave up my 4th Amendment Rights to the Bush Administration, but I will be darned if I will give up the Second Amendment ones to anyone else. Ammo in bulk is practically nonexistant since Election Day, and anything in military calibers is scarce as hens teeth, so anything I find, I will buy. I think that ammo prices will go down a little (temporarily) after NoBama is inagurated, so I will try and load up then, but I am committed to purchasing anything I come across, regardless of cost. After the guns are paid off, all the monthly gun budget will go directly to ammo until I have what I consider to be a safe amount.
5. Bug Out Bags
I will spend the next few months intensely working on family BOBs. I want us ready to go in case of any emergency, regardless if it means a night in a local motel, or a cross country trip to freedom. Everyone gets Nalgene bottles, firestarting kits, first aid kits and some survival food. You cannot be too prepared. I also will put back $200 so everyone can have $50 in small bills and an additional $300 for the family bugout kit. Cash is king. It is also time to buy some additional summer clothes to store in the bags while it is on sale. Considering summer here lasts for about 320 days, it is a good investment.
6. Expand my Universe
I have recently been in contact via the Internet with other local, like minded folks. My (pre)New Years resolution is to establish direct contact with as many of the as possible and discuss potential bartering and/or group buys. It will also help to establish local contacts in the event the balloon goes up. You never know what we might be able to help each other with.
That concludes my main preps, but I am also preparing myself mentally for the difficulties to come. That is an exercise that I do every day and I see no end in sight to that particular prep!
And the answer is yes, that is Tony Bennet that I am hanging out with in the picture (sort of).

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