A guest post by Randall B
Preparedness began for me with Hurricanes. I am slow, but after several severe storms struck Houston, followed by many weeks of power outages and food shortages etc., I finally got with it and started to prepare.
Lesson 1: it is never too late to start. (You might have seen this one in print) Food, fuel, cash were first, followed by a Berkey water filtration unit (try explaining that one to a resistant spouse), propane stove, and lots of propane. Last came the everyday carry bag (EDC). Frankly this was last because it seemed the least important. Boy was I wrong.
Lesson 2: As a new Prepper – start your preparations with the EDC bag, prepping for nuclear war can wait. I built my EDC bag originally as a possibles bag for my reenacting programs. But good stuff kept coming to my attention, so it quickly filled with all kinds of small gizmos and gadgets. Short of a few thousand board-feet of lumber, I could rebuild a war-torn city from my EDC bag. Then disaster struck. Not a big disaster, just a cut. I have kept band aids in my wallet since my kids were little. But I had run out and failed to resupply. So band aids were added to the EDC, along with ointments, gauze, and tape.
Lesson 3: EDC should have first aid supplies before tools, fire starters, flashlights, and miniature saws. We had failed to keep up our shooting training, so I took my boys and son-in-law (retired Marine, but still my boy) to the range to throw lead down field.
My first shot with my 9mm (not my everyday carry gun), mind you, the very first shot, brought the slide back and cut a huge gash in my thumb. It was one of those nasty bleeders. It exhausted my wallet band-aid stock, soaked my handkerchief, dripped on the range desk, and stained my cool tactical pants. It just kept going.
Light headiness couldn’t be far behind! I had forgotten to bring my EDC. I went into the range store to find the bathroom. The charming woman at the register smiled knowingly and pulled out a big box of band-aids for me. She gave me more than I asked for (obviously experienced with the situation) and pointed to the bathroom. Eventually, I got the bleeding under control long enough to bandage it up.
Lesson 4: Carry your EDC bag every day (now I understand the name – I am an idiot) The next day I remembered an old fashion gadget used for shaving cuts. I thought it was called a septic pen, but its official name is Styptic Pencil. Would it work for my cut? My thumb still bled generously so it was in perfect shape for an experiment.
You know what they say: “always test your gear”. The local drug store had styptic pencils so I bought one. I dampened the end and applied it to the cut – the bleeding stopped almost immediately.
Lesson 5: see Lesson 3 & 4, and include a styptic pencil.
I can only imagine how easy the day prior would have been if I had one of these babies!Following all this came the annual craft show I sell at. I had my EDC with me, or course doesn’t everyone? My EDC had a flash drive, as well as all the equipment to rebuild a city and care forthe wounded But I needed something to keep some notes on my sales.
My EDC had no pens, no pencils, and no paper. You are literate after all, so the tools of the literate are critical for everyday. So another list of items for the EDC was born.
Lesson 6: Include a pad of paper and something to write with, in your EDC. With Christmas just around the corner, I thought about EDCs for all my kids. They are all adults or close to it, so an EDC bag seemed a good gift idea. The first supplies that went in were first aid supplies followed by a pad and pen.
Lesson 7: make sure you pass along your life’s lessons to those that come behind, put the lessons in an EDC bag if they will fit!
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