Topic: Options and Likelihoods in the Event of System Meltdown
Lately I've been thinking out my own particular options in the event of either a major geological disaster (earthquake--we're overdue for the Big One in Salt Lake City) or in the wake of war or abrupt system meltdown.
If I had to leave my apartment or the city, where would I go? Or where would I go if I didn't want to be in the city after meltdown?
Luckily (in one sense) my parents--being faithful Mormons--are Apocalypse-ready. They live 40 miles away, a thirty minute drive if there's gas and if the roads are intact, or, if not, a long two-day walk.
They have food and water provisions for over a year, firewood for two or three months, candles, blankets, plenty of room, etc.
My buddy, and his parents in Southern Utah, have offered help to me if the event of meltdown, too. They live, probably, 260 miles away. They're trained backcountry rangers for Zion National Park, know the wilderness around them, and are used to extended stays outdoors. They have gear. They also know how to grow a garden, almost without a garden hose, in the arid desert.
If the roads were in tact, with maybe a few bumps and detours, and I had gas--and was allowed to travel--I could be there in five or six hours. If I had to walk...I'd be looking at two weeks. I'd probably have to have provisions backed in advance for a trip like this, and would have to filter water along the way if possible. ...I'm not ready for a trip like that.
I've also been thinking about likely scenarios in the event of a meltdown in my city (or all cities, I guess).
As I think about it, it seems there are at least three, obvious, big avenues for surviving a meltdown if you live in the city.
#1: You have a buttload of supplies on hand, like my parents (water, food, gas and gas stove for cooking, emergency candles, blankets, etc.)
#2: You throw yourself upon the local, or federal, authorities...You walk yourself down to the Superdome asking, please, for a foodpack and juicebox and a cot. You deal with panic and whiny kids and stressed out police officers.
(In Salt Lake City I know the Mormon church, a pretty big presence here, has a network of support ready to be deployed. I could probably turn up at a Mormon church--there are about ten within a thirty minutes' walk of me and I could get my instant noodles and juice box from them. That option may, however, include having to listen to Bible or Book of Mormon-reading.)
#3: You scavenge--either alone or in a group. Most likely, this option will be illegal and you could be harrassed (or jailed) by authorities.
...I just thought, homeless people probably thrive in the event of disasters. For them it's same old, same old, but even easier...
There are other options, though. I just can't think of them right now.
Leave town, be prepared, throw yourself on FEMA, or scavenge. Wilderness survival is, I guess, another option--but not a smart one for me, currently. I was a boy scout, but the only knot I remember how to tie is a square knot. I can start a fire with only one match--most times--but I hated most of my instructors and can only think of one flower that I know for sure is edible and wouldn't cause me freak diarrhea.
Also: for those of us who aren't disposed to, or in a position to learn wilderness survival, what exactly are Urban Survival Skills?
Obviously, one needs water, food, clothing and shelter, but if there were a list of Urban Survival Skills, what would they be?
but you can avoid its teeth.