Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Prudent Prepping: Summer Shift

The dust has settled and the First 72 Hours have passed. Follow along as I build a long term plan via Prudent Prepping.

I've started changing out my GHB gear from what I carry for winter in California to what is needed for summer. Certain folks have mentioned that changing for the seasons means wearing socks with sandals when it is "California Cold," but I always have socks in my gear since I never know when it'll drop below 50°!

Summerizing my Get-Home Bag and Vehicle
What's changed? Not that much, really: a wool sweater is out, and a long-sleeve t-shirt replaces it. Two pair of wool socks stay, along with the rain gear, because even if it doesn't rain during the summer here, it can be very foggy and damp along the coast. I have been an "essential employee" all during the virus panic, so there hasn't been any down time for me or my car. After checking dates on the food I carry, my bag is ready to go.

On to the car, which is getting a new set of wiper blades, washer fluid and an oil change. Blades and fluid are purchased, and oil is going to be fixed this week. I have to do a little bit of work before installing the wiper blades, though; due to the parking area at work being surrounded by pine trees, I have sap all over my car and several dents from green pine cones. My first job is cleaning the windshield of tiny droplets of sap that prevent the blades from clearing the glass well, and after that I have to do the rest of the car with Tar and Sap remover.

Coolant level, belt (singular), tire pressure and battery are checked out and in good shape, but I'm due for a major service soon, so I'm budgeting for that.

What's Happening
There was an unusual situation last week at work: an employee got dizzy and felt sick. No, it wasn't the virus, it was dehydration. Now that sounds somewhat funny to me since it hasn't been hot here; what has happened, though, is the requirement to wear a mask while working. It seems that the employee in question had been taking breaks but not drinking any water between those breaks.

Just as a reminder, the standard for water consumption is '8 glasses a day', which is 64 oz or two quarts. Now before anyone gets jumpy, that is a general guideline and YMMV, as the Mayo Clinic states in this article. An excerpt:

How much water do you need?

Every day you lose water through your breath, perspiration, urine and bowel movements. For your body to function properly, you must replenish its water supply by consuming beverages and foods that contain water.
So how much fluid does the average, healthy adult living in a temperate climate need? The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily fluid intake is:

  • About 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men
  • About 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women
These recommendations cover fluids from water, other beverages and food. About 20 percent of daily fluid intake usually comes from food and the rest from drinks. 
Further down in the linked article it explains that as long as you don't feel thirsty and your urine is clear to light yellow, you are doing okay. None of this is a hard and fast rule, so adapt your drinking to your personal situation.

I admit that finding the time or place to drink when wearing a mask has been hard, since before this I just grabbed a water bottle and drank on the floor. Now that isn't quite so easy, since a local store was fined $5,000 for employees not properly wearing masks. I'm not drinking as much water as before, and I expect that many others are in the same boat; as it warms up, I believe that dehydration may unfortunately become more and more common.

Recap And Takeaway
  • Don't neglect your car preps, even if you're not driving much. There can still be an emergency that requires you to go somewhere quickly. 
  • If you have to work, don't neglect drinking enough water to keep you healthy, no matter how much or little that is.
  • Wiper blades and fluids were purchased locally from an independent auto parts store. 
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1 comment:

  1. Don't forget those wiper blades. I think I found a way that makes them last. I did the Scotty Kilmer method on two sets of silicone ones and have had good luck getting years out of a set of blades. One set on a garaged sedan is about two years old. Another set, on a van stored outside and uncovered in upper Midwest weather, is a year old.

    The reader's digest version is:
    You warm the blades up to like 100°F or so in the oven and soak them in 303 Aerospace/Marine protectant overnight.

    I used to change my wiper arm and blade assemblies twice a year, now they seem to be lasting significantly longer.


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