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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

retreat decay


RETREAT DECAY
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Living Amongst The Dead, Dark Days by JN Morgan.  I was so impressed by the original book in the series that I wasted no time buying the sequel.  It was money well spent.  If you liked the first one, the second is just as good.  Better, if you really didn't care for the sex in the first one ( very little in this one ), and I'd even say better all the way around as JN is perfecting his craft much faster than I ever did.  Highly recommended and I'll be the first to buy his next one.
click here  to buy the Kindle version.  Free if you have Kindle Unlimited.
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You know I’m not a huge fan of retreats.  You either live in the boonies or stop pretending you will survive.  I hate bugging out and think it is the worst of both worlds-being in denial of reality and luxuriating ( wallowing, actually, a fat pig in slops ) in extra unnecessary toys.  So, I don’t really have a retreat, now do I?  That would be hypocritical.  And no, I’m not just exercising semantics to confuse and redirect.  I have a vacation/retirement house.  A retreat is a place to go out of danger, and by definition is usually some good distance away from the teeming rabble you surround yourself with to earn a few extra Greenbacks so as to own a trophy wife ( nearly a sex slave, but with barely concealed consent, with a worse attitude and a lot less sex than traditional  ) and all the cool toys only a Petroleum Age would permit and you are determined to take into the Stone Age.  “Patriots”, a great book ( and his only one ) but one that unfortunately cemented this kind of behavior in lesser rational beings, was a social commentary.  Whereas older books were community orientated ( the group survives.  Even Social Decay ‘70’s era “Lucifer’s Hammer” had a better sense of securing community.  The poor had a place ) Patriots is solidly “only the rich deserve to persevere”-at least in the sense the rich are not the 1% but the 10% guardians of the truly rich.  The truly rich don’t have retreats.  They merely travel between villas able to pick the current safest location from their Gulfstream.

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When your off grid property is just outside town, it isn’t a retreat.  Not from a tactical standpoint.  I’ve made no secret that for me to have a serious chance of surviving the bulk of the local population will have had to relocate back before the collapse ( essentially fleeing due to the high cost of living here as the mines close down ).  It doesn’t matter if I live in town or out at my property, population wise.  Before it was a way to divert funds from rent to preps.  Now it is a place to survive after the grid goes down.  But it isn’t safe at current levels of population, which is why living in town is not a consideration for me.  This isn’t “Miracle Mile” where one minute everyone is acting as normal as you can living in the city and next strangers are raping and shooting each other as missiles descend from the sky.  Regardless of circumstances I have time to leave, for as much good as it will do me. 

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An actual retreat would be much safer.  But my vacation home, my country estate if sarcasm is desired, was almost as bad as an actual retreat as far as maintenance is concerned.  It doesn’t take long for issues to arise when you aren’t there to witness them.  You can’t stop destruction but at least you can repair before other issues arise from that initial destruction.  Not that I have a whole slew of issues.  I built the place with fire and heavy winds in mind and the modern high tech miracles of plastic, aluminum and insulation assure few problems.  So far, I’ve only had two severe turd floating gully washing rainstorms and one out of control plant colonization.  The plants were from a perfect timing of rains coinciding with only weekly visits, then one skipped weekend when the weeds exploded six inches in growth.  I come back two weeks later and my ankle high weeds are getting up to my shins.  Then rains continue so the things stay wet and hard to quickly cut.  That was when I had to go from sickle to weed-eater.  If I had been gone a month the things would have been a much nicer fire danger.

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The first flash flood saw my battery floating atop a small pond at the bottom of my B-POD steps ( any new readers here?  That is what my underground hovel was christened “Bison Pit Of Doom ).  I bought a new battery and dug a hole at the bottom step and placed cement blocks for a step, creating a sump.  That has worked so far with rains, until now.  Heavy prolonged rains created a ramp out of my steps, evidently also filling my sump, and then when a flash flood came after that my battery was toast once again years later.  That is what happens when you aren’t there.  I failed to clear the landslide and so the flood screwed me.  The charge controller was fried and the connection cables to my inverter rusted and snapped off.  Not a huge deal, I keep all my spare electrical parts and I have plenty of clamps from old failed inverters.  The charge controller was more of a loss.  I went to get the old one set up at the trailer, but old age killed it ( I’d been using it almost eight years ).  Luckily I had a Faraday Cage unit I could use, it will just need replacing and I still have credit with Amazon from prior to switching from credit to cash for my lovely minions commission sales ( cough, hint ).  I still have my old panels out there so I only need a 7 amp controller ( I bought several 100 watt panels but they are in storage as an investment.  Either future off grid living or to sell once China stops exporting ).

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The flood also washed away dirt from buried buckets, in a place I thought was protected.  So while I was safer than normal from fire and wind, I still am tweaking the flood solutions.  The buckets were no big deal, obviously.  A shovel took care of that and no one the wiser.  It is just like keeping an eye on any erosion over the pit.  If plastic sheeting is exposed I cover with a shovel full of dirt to stop that solar radiation from killing the plastic ( kind of like it does to my skin-no one talks about skin cancer at these elevations, so it might be all in my head.  All those skin spots must be from old age alone ).  All in all, not a huge event.  I’m out $20 for the controller.  The battery was over three years old so if I had it somewhere besides underground the cold would have killed it already anyway.  So I have to call that regular replacement.  Still, I’m glad I’m going out there four days a week now, just so I can nip all problems in the bud.  Yes, I’m still taking Wednesdays as well as the weekend off.  A concession to aging.  So, why did I write this besides enjoying the sound of my own voice?  Apply this to what would happen at a real retreat you rarely visit.  Word to the wise.

END

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19 comments:

  1. Many times I hear of people in the Prepper community talk of bugging out somewhere safe, yet what I have seen was either their proposed BOL was too far way to be of real practical use or not any more secure then where their current home is, The idea that the BOL is typically set up with others in the local prepper group creates even more issues, yes these people are "like minded" yet none have any practical experience in really anything that a Apocalypse would expose and I figure most would self destruct in short order due to the extensive mental taxing of a uncontrolled situation that lasted more then 30 days. In my opinion it is better not to leave 1/2 of my supplies and mental comfort of being in my own home in familiar surroundings to entering a friends today, enemies tomorrow situation of a group that has not spent a tremendous amount of time together in close quarters.

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    1. Good call. I just finished writing next weeks series that touches on the temporary nature of most retreats.

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    2. Great I anticipate reading it.

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  2. Yeah , I know all about retreats and maintenance issues building up in your absence . My place is just starting to look better again. Ma keeps asking when I'm gonna start on the motor home project again....
    Yet ya know , when you go from Bison level of fitness to a total wheelbarrow case instantly...Well suffice to say the road back has been slow.
    Sorry to hear of all the preventable costs. As you say tho , the price we pay for absence.

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    1. And you, ya poor bastard, need to do maintanence in the humidity.

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    2. Meh , ya get used to it. Never have dry scaly skin though.

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    3. I think I would rather deal with no humidity vs. high humidity, just for comforts sake. I live and breath in Land of Perspiration Incontinence and it just sucks if climate control environment is not present. Acclimatize - if you live long enough.

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    4. People stay indoors with heat/AC, then move to other areas, never really acclimatizing. You can get used to living in any climate-it's what we were designed to do. After a time you have few issues and can't see what all the fuss was about. Preppers thinking they will die in the South seem to forget folks lived there centuries before AC-and will long after it.

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  3. It's a little more than a stretch to believe gazillions of people are gonna go from their McMansion to their cozy cabin in the woods just like that. You either live it or die it, and I suspect a whole lot of the latter will occur when the shit goes down.

    Not having access to stores is a big one, that keeps people's minds on a 30 second cycle, unable to reach out mentally beyond their fingertips. You have to plan ahead and think about tomorrow out here in the woods and that has been bred out of the Urbanians.

    The ones that do survive the initial burn-off will be culled in the first hard winter. Low temperatures are very harsh and more so to the ill prepared. The first spring after the splash will show this country in a modified demographic and lots of dead bodies needing tending to. If they don't know how to properly care for live bodies off-grid then they surely won't know what to do with the dead ones. Ever try to dig a hole in frozen earth? When the earth warms in March and April they don't make good fertilizer either. Who knows what sort of contagions will be summoned in bulk? Disease will further reduce the population through that first summer after. And then winter all over again.

    If you have enough ammo and resources to get through the first 6 months after the implosion it will most likely get easier for you if you are already out here. Less people = less problems. The smartest of those that survive will learn that being kind to, but wary of, your fellow man is the way we were always meant to be. A live friend is better than a dead enemy because with the latter you both lose something.

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    1. Has anyone read up on the average time of decay for the dead, say from old battlefields?

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    2. Around here the carcass will be gone in a month the smell though will linger six months.

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    3. My mother grew up on a Cattle Property (Australian lingo). They're huge, bigger than some European countries.

      One thing I recall her telling me is that she was told that when her older sister and her greeted any visitor they were to do so with a .22 under their arms. (They were young girls)

      I've got some pictures from the old days with my uncle standing over a Bull he'd shot with a .303 The rifle is as big as he was. LOL

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  4. NOTE!!!
    IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED!!!!
    DROP WHAT YOU ARE DOING RIGHT FRIGGIN NOW!!!
    ATTENTION! ATTENTION! Kroger grocery stores, or at least the local one, is having a markdown on a closeout item. The white can generic ground coffee, regularly $5 is now $4. I would imagine they are reducing the net weight in the can if not just eliminating that choice of coffee altogether. 20% reduction plus whatever price difference the future will bring. Just remember the last time I told you about a closeout, the generic shortening. That replacement was double the price so I hope you listened to me then. Now might be a good time to start. I spent close to a third of my monthly food budget taking every can they offered ( which is why you stock up on sales, to have the money free to buy even more sales, a self-perpetuating cycle of wonderfulness ). I NEVER need anything at the store except produce and that is the cheap stuff anyway-potatoes and cabbage, and hence only buy the sales. Spending that much of the monthly budget doesn’t hurt since I don’t NEED anything else that month.
    ( this message will repeat tomorrow for those hosers that don't read the comments )

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  5. https://www.amazon.com/Docooler-Controller-Battery-Regulator-Protection/dp/B00L37KZI6/ref=pd_rhf_se_s_cp_1?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B00L37KZI6&pd_rd_r=YMXAQ5H0WD981GWZSKWX&pd_rd_w=H5OSb&pd_rd_wg=ZwkxM&psc=1&refRID=YMXAQ5H0WD981GWZSKWX

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    1. Thanks, but I earmarked a different brand with better rating. 10 amp is $10, 30 amp is $15, I'll order a combination to equal $35 for free shipping.

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  6. It's funny that todays article talks about flooding issues. Here in my neck of the woods we have impending heavy rainfall (well it's already started).

    Now I've been here before (same town similar water issues), but in a different house this time but envisage similar problems.

    Anyways - The Police Commissioner for the state said "If I were running a business I'd close at 12 at the latest", "Peak hour is going to be a nightmare", "Schools are closed" & "Some public transport is going to close down".

    I think of the problems as Prep practice. It's not TEOTWAWKI or WROL nor SHTF but it is stressful & there are problems / dangers to address.

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  7. Thanksgiving until last weekend I had to leave the homestead on its own. I had thought that I would have one more trip to finish putting everything away well, unfortunately that wasn't so (I really need to get a snow plow for the truck). Anyways last weekend I made it back- sure enought several things had been knocked out of place by high winds, and erosion managed to take some bites out of several excavations I hadn't finished shoring up. But overall it was nowhere near as bad as I had thought. Once again we got mice in the trailer that we got to take care of somehow (they are IMMUNE to the poison baits you can get over the counter, and we wont put out a cat due to allergies and our not wanting to feed the coyotes) probably with traps.
    This weekend I plan to finish cleaning up, and get ready to resume the building with supplies I have on hand. Hopefully I can pay off the medical and other bills accrued this winter and get more supplies soon.
    But yes leaving any place unattended, even if you visit frequently, you will find that things do get visited by entropy in lots of ways. Everything from rodents to insects to bears could investigate and abuse what you leave behind. And that doesn't even mention our fellow humans (meth heads to punk kids, to public officials) and the effects of weather and time.

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    1. Even with snakes and hawks and freezing cold-I've found frigid corpses aplenty-those damn mice do seem to keep showing up the little bastards. Hungry and foul.

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