Monday, September 17, 2012

Prepping for ... Neighbours?

Before I touch on the subject of this post, I want to say that I
really, really wish Blogger would deal with whatever "maintenance"
they're doing.

Sometimes when prepping comes up, a "me, me, me" attitude comes up.
I'm rather shocked at the number of people who profess to be both
preppers/survivalists and Christians and yet insist that they have no
responsibility to their neighbour. I sort of recall a man who said,
about two thousand years ago, exactly the opposite.

This morning, another neighbour and I watched in horror as an older
man who lives in our building had a dizzy spell while putting
something in his truck and fell. He struck his forehead and nose. Now,
he's not VERY old, but at 63, he's old enough that a tumble like that
can be disastrous, and he's a single man living alone. Although he
insisted that he was fine, I remained concerned. I waited about ten
minutes and then went to his apartment and knocked to confirm that he
was, in fact, fine. He assured me that he caught his weight mostly on
his hand, that he did not break his nose and that the abrasion on his
forehead was very light. I'm still concerned, but I don't know what
more I can do.

This, though, made me think about neighbours and prepping. Living in
an apartment building, my neighbours are physically close, but
traditionally apartment dwellers remain distant and uninvolved with
each other. I do know where my more elderly neighbours are, and I know
who lives in the units closest to me. I have mentioned before that,
since we live in a low-income building, our security comes in great
measure from my neighbours. (As I've said, no one who knows us here
would rob us, and no one outside this building would even consider
that we would have anything worth stealing!)

Now, too often, when you consider "prepping" and "neighbours", the
advice is to hide your preps from your neighbours, don't let them know
that you put up food, store medical supplies, have extra
blankets/socks/candles, or whatever it is you do. And people have
become very frustrated at me - some because I practise paranoid OPSEC
by not revealing my real name and address and some because I
apparently practice terrible OPSEC by describing my preps online and
sharing food and such with my neighbours. I really can't win, can I?

The truth is, though, we can't manage without our neighbours. I read
Farmgal's blog and I'm struck by how often she speaks of buying from,
or working along with, her neighbours. She's a very self-sufficient,
fully prepped rural farmer and she needs her neighbours - to buy
piglets, horses and hay from, to chase runaway animals with, and to
watch out for each other's health and safety.

My neighbours know that I'm the weird food storage lady and that good
smells come from our apartment frequently. We've been dubbed "the
Mennonites" and everyone knows that we have farming contacts who can
get us the best produce in season - and we've shared that bounty when
possible. By the same token, though, everyone knows that the location
of our kitchen and living room windows (combined with my frequent
"barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen' status!!!) means that I know
*everything* that happens in our parking lot. (Some people have
appreciated that less than others!)

So what do you think? Do you consider yourself to have a
responsibility to your neighbours and do you take them into account in
your prepping.


  1. Those emergency packages sound great. I know a Salvation Army major who keeps similar packages on hand all the time. Based on what he once said, consider adding a disposable razor in the package - apparently, for a great many people, the psychological effect of being clean-shaven (whether face or legs) is tremendous.

  2.  Well, "disaster" can come in many forms. You're quite an inspiration in the way you live simply in order to help others!

  3.  Never thought about razors, that's a great idea. I'll have to go shopping for them next week.

  4. I'm a big fan of barter, we do it all the time in our community. 

  5.  Patty, I loved your comment so much that I just re-worked it as a post (making it clear that it's from you) and hopefully you'll get some good answers.


You know you have something to say. And I want to hear it. I really do.

Really. I wouldn't be blogging if I didn't love hearing what my readers have to say!