I read the post by Jess Schiller the other day and it inspired me to write of my preps because they seemed to be in a similar situation as myself and around my age.
First things first, I am a college student living with my girlfriend and her family who are somewhat naive of the current economic situation. Trying to open their eyes would almost be hopeless but I throw little tidbits in once in awhile without looking like a “foil hat” lunatic.
I like to see myself as a prepper at heart. I’ve always been into the outdoors, I grew up fishing and hunting, hiking and camping and I have always been into doing things for myself and making things myself. And I believe in the “5 P’s”. Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.
Since I am living in the home of someone else I try to be polite and not take up more space than I need and clean up after myself, which makes storage of bulky items difficult. I work about 30 hours a week and with the few bills I have I am able to afford a small storage unit to keep a lot of my “stuff”, mostly non-food items.
When it came to picking a storage facility I had a few requirements. It had to be in a convenient location, the ability to get in during a grid down situation, and a broad window that I am able to use the front gate (being a student and working late leaves little time to do other things). The place I chose fit the bill. It is located within 2 miles of the house and I pass it no matter where I go on my daily routine. The front gate has a battery back up and there are numerous “hidden” gates around the perimeter that are only closed with a single lock. Then finally I have access to my space from 6am to 10pm every day. During a grid down situation I would only need a set of heavy-duty bolt cutters to access my equipment. There are a few items I cannot store there (food and gasoline) but like my dad said, “what they don’t know can’t hurt.” I just told myself that any food that gets stored there is either canned or in buckets to prevent rodent infiltration.
Fortunately for me my parents are preppers. My dad has done many, many hours of research so if I have a question I usually send it his way before anything else. My initial plan is to bug in with my girlfriend and her family but if things get really bad we have the option to bug out to my parent’s house. I am working on acquiring a tanks-worth of gas for my Jeep and rotating it so I have enough on hand to get there. My Jeep is another story. (I may write up a story on my BOV in the future).
As far as protection I am licensed to carry concealed in my state. Unfortunately I can not carry on campus or at work so I carry a collapsible baton in my Jeep and I always carry a knife. I figure I would get in a lot less trouble if someone wanted to call me out on carrying a small pocket knife over a pistol. I currently only have my pistol with a few thousand rounds but I am working on both a 12 gauge pump and a mid-range semi-automatic rifle. Either an AR-15 or an AK-47, still debating and shopping. Christmas is coming and hopefully my dad is reading this. **wink wink**
It’s hard to store bulk grains and other food without sending up a red flag so needless to say there are a few cardboard boxes (that Jeep parts came in) with rice and beans in mylar bags with O2 absorbers under my bed. 5 gallon buckets are not mandatory they just help protect the mylar. Water is still an issue that needs taken care of for me. There are usually a few cases of water in the garage but they are for daily use by everyone so I have begun storing cases in my storage unit. Cases of 24 can usually be picked of for $3-4 or cheaper on sale. I’ve been putting it of because of cost but a quality water filter system needs to be purchased (preferably a washable one to extend the life of the filters).
Since I am an avid hiker and camper I have most of the necessities to survive off grid for a while. One thing I recommend is a Coleman 2 burner camping stove and a good cook set. Without them you are S.O.L. Plus a lot of propane canisters. I also have an adapter hose so I can use the larger 20# tanks.
I still have a lot to do but it is slowly coming together, so for those students reading this it is possible to be prepared. Store a little at a time and do a lot of reading and research. There is a lot of information out there now so absorb as much as possible and the rest will follow. Good luck.