survival is nothing more than recovery
on a cruise, know where your lifeboat station is
Only the very fortunate will not suffer some kind of disaster in their lives. The very unfortunate may stagger from one disaster to another, with barely enough time and energy to get over one catastrophe before they have to face another. Some may be forever scarred by one negative experience in their life, while others will survive and thrive no matter what kind of crap the Cosmos throws at them. One person may never get over a single unhappy love affair, while another will still come out smiling and optimistic after having their heart ripped out by a promiscuous cheating partner. Some may face ordinary adversity and die, while others will live through the most horrible experiences imaginable.
It’s all a question of attitude and preparedness, the difference between surrender and hope. You are not who others say you are, you are the sum of your own beliefs. A man owes very little to what he was born with, a real man makes himself.
Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, about eight minutes without air, but for only one second without hope. ~ Charles Darwin
Disasters come in many forms, but disaster recovery has only one shape. Be prepared. Because one thing is almost certain, one day, in some way, most of us will face a disaster; unemployment, being broke, betrayal, divorce, violence, flood, fire, earthquake, terrorism, wildfires, death of a loved one, critical illness….
You might say; ‘how can anyone prepare for all that….’ or, ‘how can you prepare for a disaster if you don’t know what kind of disaster you are going to have to face…..’ That’s defeatism. People who talk, think, and believe in those ways are less likely to recover well from a disaster than someone who knuckles down and optimistically gets ready to face whatever fate throws at them.
There are just three rules;
- Do not delude yourself. If you live in an earthquake zone prepare to survive an earthquake. If you marry a bastard / slut then prepare to end up broke and on the street. If you set sail on uncharted oceans prepare to get dis-masted and lost. If you leave a contractor alone in your home expect it to be wrecked when you return.
- Be as fit and healthy as you can possibly be in body, mind, spirit, finances, and ‘stuff’. Work at it.
- Learn things. Read books such as How To Stay Alive by Bear Grylls. Go to night school to learn car mechanics. Learn about camping. Learn how to grow your own food. Be curious, stop wasting your most valuable commodity; time.
There is a thing called Disaster Shock, and it will kill you ~ the more prepared you are the less likely you will suffer from this and die.
have your important stuff easily to hand, so you can drive away from a wildfire within minutes
Sometimes I feel like I’m living on the edge of a fault-line.
If you live in an earthquake zone, somewhere on the ring of fire, then sooner or later where you live is going to experience a big one. One thing that you should bear in mind if you suffer a serious earthquake ~ there will be dangerous aftershocks. And nobody can predict when or where an earthquake will strike.
To have the best chance of surviving an earthquake, you should;
- Have a plan, write it down, keep it safe.
- Be somewhere else at the time.
- Always keep a half-tank of gas in your car ~ you may need to get out of town in a hurry.
- Keep an earthquake survival kit in the trunk of your car.
- Have some basic tools in the trunk of your car, including a hatchet, fire extinguisher, and high powered flashlight. These should be in the trunk of your car anyway, along with a space blanket and first-aid kit.
- Keep your hiking boots and 2 pairs of clean socks in the trunk of your car.
- Have plenty of bottled water at home, and always keep some in your car.
- Stay away from buildings, when it’s safe to get outside, find an open space to be even safer from the aftershocks.
- Stay away from windows, street lights, utility cables, and overpasses.
- If you are indoors, do not use an elevator. Stand in a doorway, the door-frame might just protect you. At worst get under a table. Do not try to leave the building until the quake stops.
- If you are indoors, stay away from anything tall, such as cupboards, wardrobes, and filing cabinets. Get away from anything hanging from the ceiling or walls.
The snag is, if you follow this advice the trunk of your car is always going to be full of survival equipment, making it untidy and not much use for collecting groceries from the supermarket. Also, real survival would mean you buying a 4X4 off road vehicle, like a Land Rover or Jeep instead / as well as whatever car you drive now. And you would keep a tent and other camping things in your 4X4.
And not much of the above matters one jot if your car is in a garage, which collapses on it during a big earthquake.
Anyway, survival is a state of mind. Staying alive during and after a disaster is more about psychology and physiology than it is about having a ton of survival gear. Perhaps the best thing to do is go in an appropriate course at a survival school instead of a beach vacation next year.
Land Rover, the best 4X4 by far