Don’t panic! Maybe powering down is just what we need to understand how to be resilient – and that we are resilient beings! Instead of running out to buy our own backup generators, we could shut off our devices, break out the sweater and wool socks, and trust that we’re going to be fine. Do we really need to rush out to buy more stuff?
My husband, kids and I learned that we have more than enough backup food and supplies around the house to live fairly comfortably for a long time when our Lost Coast backpacking adventure during Spring break last year turned out much different than expected. What was supposed to be a 3-day 2-night hike along 24 miles of the rocky coastline from Humboldt to Mendocino, turned into a 5-day trip that brought us closer and changed us forever, for the better. Little did we know we’d get stuck in the biggest downpour ever recorded on the CA coast, that everything we had would be soaked through, and we’d be stuck out on the bluffs between raging rivers and giant surf. We were incredibly lucky to find shelter and be able to get dry. We had to live on rations of 200 calories a day and knew we wouldn’t starve with plenty of snakes, rabbits and deer around if things got really tough. We had the security of knowing that my 11-year old son had “you tubed” how to prepare a snake if needed. It may be surprising to hear that it was probably the best experience we’ve ever had together. When we got home, we realized just how much stuff we have accumulated that we don’t need. We realized we have enough food in the freezer and pantry to live off of for a very long time.
Let’s embrace this time without power and enjoy the quiet calm of being unplugged. Instead of running our own generators and burning tons of fossil fuels, let’s connect and share with our neighbors. If you know someone nearby that might need support or comfort, let them know you’re there to help out if needed.
Here’s our plan: Day 1 – eat stuff in refrigerator, day 2 – eat from the freezer, day 3 make our way to the pantry. I might even eat the sardines and olives that have been there way too long! We do have a grill with cooktop that could come in handy and extra rations in the garage emergency kit that we’d be happy share if anyone needs a meal. I will miss the hot tub ;)