Thursday, September 9, 2021

Where To Start?

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

Word is out around work that I write for a  prepping blog. Thankfully, only one person has asked the obvious and clich├ęd prepping question, and they were mildly happy to hear I didn't have a hidden hideout/bunker.

(If someone has recently hit the PowerBall, won the lottery or is otherwise able to afford and is interested in having a bunker, I actually know a guy that does them. Seriously.)

While most of us here at BCP have been asked the bunker/hideout/secret lair question, this was the first time someone has been happy I didn't have one. The more I think about it, the more I'm confused.

At the Beginning
An ancient Chinese proverb says "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." I didn't save the link to a guy who once said "Some is the same as none" when prepping, and don't want to raise my blood pressure by looking now, but needless to say I disagree. There has to be a first step, a first purchase and yes, a first mistake when prepping. I find my mistakes are much better learning moments than are getting things right, whether they be right by accident or right on purpose.

I admit to being a book collector and have bought many different prepping books, and here are three that I always have on hand to pass on to friends asking serious questions. A fellow by the name of Tony Nestor has written many different prepping books, and he wrote two of the three that I like to give out. 

1) Surviving A Disaster by Tony Nester
From the Amazon ad:
Could you evacuate from your home in 15 minutes with the pertinent survival gear necessary for overcoming a disaster?

The most effective means of surviving such an event is to have the essential gear and plans in place beforehand and this only comes from developing a mindset of self-reliance. In his third book in the Practical Survival Series, Tony Nester takes you through the scenarios, planning, and emergency kits for surviving natural and manmade disasters where you are forced to evacuate your home.

Surviving A Disaster covers methods that have worked for real-life survivors and delves into the practical skills that can be used for preparing your family and surviving on the run. You will learn how to formulate an escape plan for your specific region and what an evacuation entails along with a straightforward approach to assembling emergency kits for the home, office, and vehicle. There is also a special section on preparing children for a crisis and what their personal survival kits should contain. The strength of this book rests on field-tested strategies and pragmatic tips taken from actual first responders and survivors.
While the book is on the slim side at 58 pages, the information inside is worth it. The author lives in the Southwest, and so is familiar with wildfires similar to what we have here in California. The basic information is solid, even with the book being published 13 years ago. I've mentioned to my friend that when the time comes to start buying extra things to search out 'water filters', 'stoves' and 'first aid kits' as a start, since there have been amazing improvements in all three categories.

2)When the Grid Goes Down by Tony Nester
From the Amazon ad:
Disasters come and go each year but it is through developing a self-reliant mindset, having essential survival gear and possessing a handful of critical skills, that you and your family will be able to prevail in an urban crisis.

Jammed with field-tested information from real-world applications, survival instructor Tony Nester covers how to prepare for both short-term survival ranging from 24-72 hours as well as long-term situations resulting from a grid-down emergency or pandemic.

When the Grid Goes Down will show you the 6 key areas to make your home and lifestyle more self-sufficient and the critical gear needed along the way. Topics Include: Creating a Self-Reliant Home, Water Storage and Purification Methods, Alternative Water Sources At Home, Creating a Water Map for Your Region, The 3 Essential Food Types to Stock Up On, Designing an Off-Grid Medical Kit, Home Security and Personal Defense Measures, Safeguarding the Exterior and Interior of Your Home, and Alternative Sanitation Methods.
Another slim volume at 78 pages but again, it has really nice information set out in easy to read and understand chunks. This was written in 2013, so I don't have as many small quibbles with the text. I especially like the chapters on Water, Food, First Aid, Home Security & Personal Defense, Heating, Cooling & Energy Needs and Hygiene & Sanitation. I've followed many of the suggestions in this book.

The last book I hand out is also the longest to read. It is fractionally more expensive, but it can make non-readers eyes start to glaze over due to the extra details... and pages. Not that it's too long; it's just not as easy to get through as the previous two.
From the Amazon ad:
Prepare. Survive. Thrive. Is your survival plan complete from A to Z? Are you truly 100 percent prepared? Because if you overlook one vital area, fail to stock one critical supply or underestimate one potential danger, your whole plan could come crashing down.

The Prepper’s Complete Book of Disaster Readiness guarantees you won’t miss a thing as you prepare for the most important moment in your life. This bible of prepping shows each and every life-saving step necessary to keep your family alive and well when the world around you is in chaos, including how to: Efficiently store water and acquire additional fresh water after a collapse; Build a shelf-stable food stock and supplement it by harvesting edible wild plants; Strengthen the security of your home as well as have a back-up bug-out plan; Treat illness and stay healthy when there are no doctors or hospitals; Build a safe and secure survival retreat that allows for long-term off-the-grid living.

While there is a small amount of overlapping information in all three books, this particularly covers preparing a house/apartment in a lot of detail: like 272 pages of details, including Note Pages. When I was sharing an actual house several years ago, I followed the home hardening tips as well as possible in the place we were renting. Things aren't quite as simple in a condo.

I particularly like the several appendices where the author lists his recommended books and has several checklists based on what has been written in the book. Due to the extra Suggested Reading, this could be a rabbit hole for some people, but as the author says, "I'm not sure which would be worse: not having a particular skill and having no means of researching it, or knowing damn well you have the information... somewhere... but can't find it."

Recap And Takeaway

  • I am going to purchase another set of these three books very soon, as the copies I have now are dogeared, page flagged, marked up and not attractive as a giveaway.
  • I will be going over the important information with the Purple Pack Lady when our schedules match up so that she understands why I have some of the "silly stuff" in my various bags.
  • Nothing was purchased this week.
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If you have comments, suggestions or corrections, please post them so we all can learn. And remember, Some Is Always Better Than None!

NOTE: All items tested were purchased by me. No products have been loaned in exchange for a favorable review. Any items sent to me for T&E will be listed as such. Suck it Feds.

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