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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Mini practice run

Here in Iowa one thing we deal with is power outages. Usually they do not last long but they can provide us with some great practice. Recently I had the week from Hades and everything seemed to break down at once. My car's ignition broke. My cell phone was not working. Then I woke up one morning and my Internet, Television, and phone was out (they are bundled together). What a day. I was waiting for my daughter's grandma to get here so I could use her cell phone and car to get some things figured out. Next thing I know the power goes out. For a split second I thought, "What if this is it?" I really didn't think TEOWAKI was actually here. Yet it seemed weird that my communication services went down just a couple hours before the power went out. I decided to act like it was the start of the end. I started the bathtub filling, got the baby settled, and found the flashlight. Notice how I said that, "Found the flashlight." Bad prepper move I had to look for the flashlight and then the batteries were dead. Now this was too funny because I have enough food and water and weapons to keep me and mine for a while, and here I am with no working flashlight. So with Candle in hand I went to the basement and tried the circuit breakers. Not a blown fuse. I had the brilliant idea that I could fill the washing machine with water as well to be safe. Note to self, the washing machine will not fill with water when the elctricity is out. Lessons learned for sure on that day.

After getting coats and shoes on we went outside to look around. Everything seemed in order. I knocked on the neighbor's door and their power was out as well. As we were talking it came back on. I felt relieved and then started the "what did I do well and what could I have done better drill?" I stayed calm and filled the tub with water. I had food, water, and weapons in place. I looked at this as a learning opportunity. I could have had flashlights in order (note; Don't let the toddler play with your emergency flashlight). I have taken care of the flashlights and purchased rechargeable batteries. Santa is bringing me a shake or crank flashlight and radio next month. I now know that the washing machine won't be an option in a power out situation. I am working on redundant systems.

Funny enough my communication systems were down because my landlord was at the property doing some things and unintentionally unplugged my router box. I could not check the television or the Internet to find out if this was a serious disaster or minor set back. I also could not call someone to ask them. JWR suggests taking mini practice weekends where you live without services to practice. I am glad I had this opportunity as it shed light on the holes in my preps.
Take every opportunity you get to be patient, Prepare, and Practice then when the time comes you will be ready. Good luck everyone....Check your flashlights, T
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