What Are We Preparing For?

My post this week was going to be about sourdough. I appologize but felt the need to get this out there.

We have been very lucky weather-wise. We have not had the disastrous snowstorms like in Colorado and Upstate New York. We do not get hurricanes the strength of those down south, and we very rarely have tornadoes or earthquakes. We were in drought conditions last summer, but I believe the fall rains alleviated that. So why do we prepare? What exactly are we preparing for?

A few weeks ago, I touched upon our journey and why we strive to be as self-reliant as possible. One of the reasons is quite simply for weeks like this.

Thursday night we got snow. It was nothing like the major feet of snow that other places got, just a few inches. None the less school was cancelled which meant I lost a day’s pay. Then Sunday night through Monday night we got more. School was cancelled again. Now we are all glued to the weather forecast because they say today into Thursday, we will have another 4-7 inches.

These are not major storms. “In the good old days” life would not have come screeching to a halt for this much snow. Even when my own kids were little, they would have attempted to have school. Now according to some young parents on Facebook, the roads are unsafe, and the hills are too dangerous for the buses. These are the same roads and hills that existed 25 years ago, but now they are unsafe. Everyone should stay at home. There should be no one driving in a few inches of snow.

Ok I admit I hate going out in the snow now, but I am old. When I was in my 30s, 40s, even early 50’s I would say “ok, challenge accepted” and out the door I would go. The adrenaline would get pumping and getting the kids to and from school safely was MY JOB! A job that every school bus driver I know takes very seriously. I was more than capable because I paid attention and knew how to drive in the snow. A few inches of snow was nothing for central Massachusetts.

This is a great article that lists our biggest snowstorms.

I’m sorry I went off on a little tangent there.
What does this all have to do with us being prepared?

Well, this snow was wet and heavy because it has been so warm. It caused trees to snap bringing down power lines. The outdated electrical system in a city twenty miles from here blew a couple of transformers, which caused a domino grid down situation in surrounding towns. Many of these same folks that are worried about going out in the snow have no electricity now and are totally unprepared for these situations. In many cases they have no heat source because everything in their home is powered by electricity. They cannot cook because their stoves and instapots are inoperable without a power source. They are examples of a generation that will be totally lost and unprepared should this country go completely off the rails. They laugh at people like me because we are old fashioned in the way we think. Tsk Tsk Tsk.

Last night my husband and I sat here watching the snow and the wind. We knew that if we lost power, we would be out in the shed with a flashlight firing up the generator and running extension cords, but we would not be without heat. We knew we would be able to pull jars out of the closet and have a hot meal without opening the freezer. If the power went out for days or weeks we could refill the gas tanks, provided the gas station has a generator to run the pumps. We learned from past experience to keep some cash on hand. No electricity means no ATMs and no debit or credit card transactions. It is important to remember that we could lose that convenience at any time.

This is what we are always preparing for. We are not preparing for the zombie apocalypse. We are not preparing for the end of the world. We are preparing for a breakdown of the systems that everyone takes for granted. My husband and I are capable of doing without a lot of convenience, but we must be prepared for it. At our age it takes a lot longer to get things done. We get tired and we get sore. We can’t lift heavy loads like we used to, but we can make adjustments as long as we have a plan.

I worry about my family and friends who think we are nuts. I worry about my children and grandchildren that have come to rely so heavily on all the gadgets and technology. Will they remember from their childhood the times when we blocked off rooms with heavy blankets and all lived in a few rooms to conserve heat? Will they remember how to save frozen food in the middle of winter by using nature’s freezer? I can only hope and pray that they will. They were prepared through life experience by us, the crazy old folk that have weathered many storms.


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