Yesterday we rearranged kitchen cupboards, which led to reorganizing them, which led to re-examining our preps, which led to my mind thinking of why we prep.
A recent visitor (the father of one of my grandkids) asked, "Why do you have so much stuff?" As usual, I said, "We like to be prepared for just about anything. We don't like being dependent on the 'system', nor should you."
He scoffed at my response and said, "I live right next door to a grocery store. I can always get what I need." Really, I asked? "Then what about the time you were out of work and broke? What about the time it was closed due to the blizzard? What about..."
Those were just nuisances, he said. Not something that happens often.
I wanted to scream a few choice words and explain a bit further but it's pointless talking to some people. He needs a few more "nuisances."
Today, while making my February shopping list, I thought of the prepping/preparedness scenarios most likely to affect us.
The weather: thus far, our winter's been unseasonably warm and we've plowed snow about six times. But what if we had 300 inches of snowfall, numerous blizzards and the roads were blocked more often than plowed?
Our income: Fortunately, Social Security continues to deposit to our bank account and we immediately pull it out. But what if the SS check didn't show up for one month, three months? What if our bank account was frozen?
Our vehicles: Our Blazer, Ford pickup and Crown Victoria all run reliably. The two fords are licensed and insured and we both have driver's licenses, so we legally drive. The roads are maintained well enough to drive 10-20 miles to a grocery store. But what if our vehicles weren't road worthy or a road has washed out? What if we were unable to drive due to an illness or injury?
Price increases/availability: Thus far we can afford to purchase food and it's still on the grocery shelves. We supplement with nearly 100 quarts from our garden - in a lean year. We plan to increase the size and yield of our garden. But what if hyper-inflation takes hold and we can't afford to buy food? And what if the garden doesn't produce well?
The answer to all of the above questions is: WE'D STILL EAT!!!!
We'd also be able to heat and cook without electric or propane. We'd have running water from our 17' well. We'd wash clothes in the Maytag or with the portable washer I've mentioned before. We'd read, play cards, build puzzles and sew/quilt. We'd watch TV, listen to the radio or CDs or be online too - if we chose to run a generator. And we'd have the fuel for the generator!
Without a massive EMP, the plague or a nuclear event, life as we know it would continue. How many people can say that?
We live in a lightly populated area which is basically the end of the road. You don't pass by here to reach another city or look for work. The nearest freeway is nearly six hours away! Maybe you'd come here to paddle across Lake Superior but there are shorter routes. So we're unlikely to deal with roaming masses of people who may plunder and kill. Any thing's a possibility. But, is it likely here? I doubt it.
Given our resources, location and level of preparedness, we're in better shape than most people. So, why not continue down that path?