Thursday, October 2, 2014


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I visited the Arts Council Gallery while on an errand in San Andreas. Mary Jane Gennochio, who runs this amazing group, was discussing earthquake preparedness. She has a motor home and was talking about what you keep ready for disasters. She has her important papers ready to place in the motor home and pictures and some medical supplies. That works for fire evacuation as well.  I told her I’ve carried a survival kit in my car for years and I took her out to my car and showed it to her. I had removed two pieces of the survival kit because I was having work done on my car. So, when I got home, I decided to check my survival kit and explain why I do it.
My small car is a 2001 Prius. The picture above is my back seat. It has a body pillow and under that a lounge cushion, a blanket, and two pillows. In a pinch, I’m short, I can sleep in my car comfortably. The cushions can be removed and easily slapped on my garage work table if I’m carrying an adult in the back seat.  But, mostly it’s been my grandkids. So, at least one cushion rides with me all the time. The seat belts are useable no matter what.
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In my glove compartment,  next to the driver’s seat, is a headlamp, two pair of warm gloves, eating utensils, napkins, nail file, wash cloth and a few miscellaneous items, plus a towel covers my front seat. I always have a jug of water, a garbage can, and maps for the areas I travel. I have a Garmin GPS, but it doesn’t always work accurately.
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This is my trunk. On the left is a cushion covered in plastic. A piece of rug in the bottom of the box. Both allow you to sit on something other than bare ground if needed. A military shovel is upright at the back of the boxes. Chains in the middle box and I always carry a jug of water. The right third of my trunk holds my survival kit. I always have enough room for groceries or carrying a bag of mulch or something home from the hardware store even with everything you see in my trunk.
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The right third of my trunk holds my survival gear. Notice a folded windshield screen next to the folded stool.
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My foldable stool is handy to sit on, and it is filled with stuff.
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A stuffed full backpack.
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And, a stuffed full carry-all.
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When I unloaded those three items, you can see that the bottom of my trunk has a tarp that can be placed on the ground and prevent wetness. Or hung over a clothesline for emergency shelter from rain.
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When I pull back the tarp, an extra blanket. I used to carry a small one person pop up tent under that blanket when my grand-kids were little. It would hold two of them. I gave it away when they got too big for it.
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The windshield sunscreen can actually double as a solar cooker. I’ll go into solar cooking on another blog.
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Unloading the stool first, here is a toilet and fire starter.
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A bungee cord, wipes, eating utensils, a mosquito net, small saw, bungee clothes line, and a small net bag in which one can put a note, nail it to a tree, or hang it from a bush if you were lost in the woods and wanted someone to find out where you went. The handsaw can cut down a small sapling or branches from a tree or bush.
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Let’s examine the “toilet”. I know this is an icky subject, but I’ve had occasion to use it several times. The can holds a bunch of plastic bags, to line the can in the event you need more than a urinal. The urinal is a hospital appliance that I carry in a burnable bag.

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Also in the stool is a package of wrapped sanitary napkins. They can sop up water, staunch blood from a wound or used as a sanitary napkin. Inside the can are pieces of cardboard, paper, dry wood chips and a propane torch to start fires. I’ve never been a boy scout and would hate to take the time to start a fire that way.
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Unloading the back pack I counted four jackets of different sizes, and two sweatshirts.
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Now, I see more toilet paper, a note bag with paper and pencil, ropes, one with hooks, one without; a light scarf and two plastic ponchos, matches and a candle in a plastic bag; a heavy scarf and a wool knit cap; five individually wrapped pairs of socks, and a sewing kit., a spare pair of shoes, and a folding knife. Hmmm. This pack has morphed into too many jackets, no extra pants, no clothing for hot weather, no hammer or stakes, and I remember having those things as one time.  It needs major updating. I’m glad Mary Jane inspired me to look at my survival kit. But I have another packet to unload.
I’ve run out of time because Jim and I have an appointment at the Vets in Sonora and I have two appointments for bids on my car damage.  I’ll have to come back to this tomorrow.

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