Yes, you would think we are all a bit stuffed if the world as we know it ends, but the recent change to winter weather has underscored how I don’t even have the basics of survival. I have built three fires in the past week and none of them have kept burning. Once the jiffy firelighter is spent, the whole thing just dies in a puff of stinky smoke. Who would have thought it would be so hard?
Perhaps I should have gone to brownies instead of ballet as a child, or watched a few more episodes of Bear Grylls, but at least I have come to this realisation before it is too late, there is still time to learn. The real question is; how many other things are there that I take so for granted that I am not even aware of my lack of ability?
I’ve never made a crystal radio set, so communicating with other post-apocalyptic survivors is out. I’m unable to weed my veggie patch at the moment as I’m not sure which of the little green bits are weeds and which are baby vegetables. And even if they do grow, I don’t know how to harvest the seeds so they will grow when planted the following year (which part of the plant do carrot seeds even come from). And that’s just for starters.
How ironic that in this modern age, when we are closer to the end of times than ever before (purely by virtue of the fact that the end is at the end and now is the closest we can be to that), we are less prepared than at any other time in history to take care of ourselves.
Perhaps I need to inject that little piece of information into some of my post-apocalyptic fiction as a warning to others. It might be a very cold day indeed on December 22nd 2012 if I can’t get my fire to stay alight. I suppose I could always just stockpile the jiffys!