My father was a survivalist. When the Cuban Missile Crisis loomed in 1962, he considered moving us south to Mexico or South America. Of course, at five years old, I was blissfully unaware that my new first language might be Spanish. His back up plan was to hunker down and survive in our basement. It was built into the side of a hill, and therefore safe from fallout. There were shelves with additional height and width that would serve as sleeping spaces. I remember searching through the storage trunks to find blankets, canned food, water and a pistol. To me, it was another playroom; to my father, it was survival. Obviously, nothing happened.
Then came Y2K. Daddy went all out for that one. At this point in their lives, my father was 86 years old, and my mother was 82 and an invalid following a stroke. And yet, bless his heart, he was determined to keep my mother and himself safe from perceived challenges. He bought 500 pounds of freeze dried food, a gun, and a tiller. He had USGS maps charting his getaway routes, and he searched for ten acres of land (on a lake or river) that would be their refuge. He never found a suitable property, so when Y2K arrived, he and Mother waited it out at the retirement home. Obviously, nothing happened.
But there continue to be threats against us, both man-made and environmental. We could be hit by a massive solar flare, economic collapse, or some kind of terroristic threat such as an EMP or bio-terror (and, of course, there are the zombies!). I'm sure there are opinions about all these threats, both pro and con -- doomsdayers who believe these will all come true, probably at the same time, as well as optimists who think we are immune to any disturbance. I have no idea who is right, but I keep the following adage in mind: prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
So, we prepare.
You may have noticed an upsurge in shows and website related to prepping. Some people have been prepping for years and have gone to extremes, such as underground bunkers and elaborate security systems. We haven't gone to those lengths, but we have guns and ammo, backpacks and assault vests, a generator, and other necessary tools (flint, compass, etc). We are also looking into acreage in Colorado, preferably with a solar house and live water. When we find our home, we plan to store food and other necessities for life after the apocalypse.
Are we crazy? Maybe, but The Husband counters my reservations by reminding me that we'll be in better shape than most if something occurs. I suppose if we have the means and the space, there's nothing wrong with it -- better safe than sorry!
My daddy passed away in April of 2011, and I can't help but wonder if he's watching all of our preparations with laughter ("oh, you silly people") or a high five and an "atta girl."
Have you made any preparations for a (possible) impending crisis or are you reading this through tears of laughter?
Have you been there?