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Planning to Fail Part 2

Afternoon.

Grey and miserable day in Stoke! Nowt new there but the encroaching winter is certainly making itself felt.

After getting over the [sarcasm] excitement [/sarcasm] of seeing the Eldar videos for DoW2: Retribution (enough with the core races already! Evles in space- we get it), I have settled down barely long enough to continue my planning for the apocalypse. If you haven’t seen the first installment, it’s my previous blog post.

So. We have narrowed down the types of apocalypse to plan for; I will be assuming some kind of non-total virus or world war situation, possibly with natural disasters. Next, the crucial first 24 hours!

Good Morning Wasteland

It’s happening all around; chaos is breaking out as the population panics. Most people will die in these few hours. Assuming that I’m not directly hit by Ragnarok, the first hours are very important.

  • Immediate needs. Shelter from the destruction is the first priority. Find the nearest stable structure with good access and preferably communications, supplies and some manner of authority figure. Library would be a good one, police station maybe, or even a church. Those old buildings are tough and there should be some tea bags in there. Get out of the street and into somewhere that isnt falling down and can be barricaded. First aid time- I may have been struck by debris, people or illness. Stop the bleeding! If I wake up in my own home on the day of the apocalypse, seeing the news on the tv or radio perhaps, then I can skip some steps here. This does not mean go back to bed for a bit!
  • Secondary needs. I’m out of harm’s way but a long way from safety. In the case of injuries, if first aid hasnt had much effect, seek medical attention. Call or find a doctor- know the nearest surgeries. Bound to be panic in the streets so be armed. Food and water must be secured- check shelter for supplies- failing that, I can go a few hours without it so foraging can be forestalled until things calm down, but must be done before the effects of malnourishment start and before someone else gets the same idea. Contact loved ones, ascertain locations and prioritise either pick up or trust them to make safe passage to me.

The next step depends on those factors. May need to travel to (in order of priority): Medical center, loved ones, foraging target. Staying put is preferable but likely unavoidable- in either case, the next priority after securing safety is preventing further harm.

  • Weapons. Whatever the apocalypse, there will be chaos. If it’s zombies (it won’t be zombies) then this goes without saying. Since there is still at this point a vague structure of society remaining, open hostility is unwise unless neccesary, so concealable weapons come before big weapons unless things are truly screwed up. Knives are easy, concealable and effective and of course they have 101 other uses in survival situations. Get 1 knife minimum- could be foraged from shops or home. A blunt weapon is useful for dealing with people non-lethally (bear in mind a gentle tap with a heavy blunt object can still kill, but its preferable to a knife) and also for dealing with obstructions and suchlike. Bats, hammers, etc are fine. Guns are probably not going to be needed and will be hard to find- file that one under the next stage of survival. Armour is probably not needed but if I’m going foraging I will get some anyway- sports padding and bike leathers are good examples of practical things that can take the edge off a fall or wound. If it’s a quake situation, this is important. Otherwise warm, rugged clothing is needed- could be sleeping rough and you can always take clothes off, but not always find more.
  • Transport. Foraging and transporting loved ones or the wounded will be ten times easier with transport. If its chaos out there, should be unsecured cars to grab. Check fuel guage. Get someone who can drive better to do the driving, if they can be trusted. Begin prioritising fellow survivors by loyalty and value! Doctors, responders, fighters, etc.

Foraging could be hard depending on the state of society. No use engaging in looting if the police are still organised, which they likely will be. They should be organising help for people but frankly if they panic then you just have a big, well armed gang to contend with. Don’t cross them unless absoltely neccesary- better to assemble loved ones and get home, where my survival kit will be awaiting.

Survival kit?! Yes, indeed! Short of a few items that must be obtained from shops, its not to hard to have a kit at home, which of course doubles as a shelter. So, I will gather the following tools:

  • Clothing. Again, tough and durable, winter clothing. Practical stuff is priority- waterproof, pockets galore, hoods, tough boots. Will be walking a lot.
  • Cooking kit, provided there is room. Pan, gas stove. water purifying tablets. Knife, deadly. Bottled water, lots of it. Beans!
  • Tent, good one. Sleeping bag/mat.
  • Trinkets. Goes against the utilitarian style of survival, but got to grab those essential things that keep me being me. Rings and whatnot.
  • Phone- incredibly useful if the infrastructure for it still remains. Paper Map would be ideal too.
  • Torch for light, matches for warmth.

That’s the bare bones. Once people have been rounded up and I have shelter, the rest can be planned- this is all about surviving the first hours. My most likely course would be to prioritise secondary people to visit/recruit into my band of survivors; further scattered family and friends. All travel will be perilous so this must be considered carefully. On the other hand, my home will not stand up as a shelter forever. The next stage will be all about how to go on from this point.

One more thing. Have fun!

by Bret

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