Monday, March 11, 2013

The Reluctant Outdoorsman

           There is a reason why I am called the Reluctant Prepper. Prepping requires a lot of time, a lot of money, and a lot of thinking. I don’t have a lot of time. I don’t have a lot of money. I don’t have a whole lot of room left in my brain to allocate to more diverse thinking. So I am reluctant, but doing it anyway.

            To date I have concentrated more on the” stuff” more than the “skills.” My fellow Preppers are always quick to remind me the absolute necessity of learning more primitive skills, things that can be done very simply without modern conveniences. I have some skills and a lot of books that I will study more closely “someday.” Take heart, I recognize this is my big flaw as a Prepper and will take steps to improve my “toolbox” as I can.

            One area I plan to work on is being more “outdoorsy.” Don’t get me wrong, I am not “city folk.” I grew up in a rural farming community and currently reside in a large town that considers itself a rural farming community. We tent-camped a few times a year growing up and still continued that up to a few years ago, when our little sojourns into the state campgrounds became fewer and fewer. At that point, when we did camp, we went to areas that had running water, flush toilets and showers. Now, we haven’t been camping in years and more primitive camping is even further in the past.

           I would like to change this sad state of being. I plan to begin camping again this Spring, working my way from modern convenience tent-camping back to deeper woods, outhouse campsites (eventually). Yes, I could start sleeping under the stars and pooping in a hole now, but let’s try baby steps first. Not only for me, but to preserve my marriage. Mrs. TRP does not poop in holes (at least, not yet.)

           Another skill that I lack completely is hunting. Sure, I can shoot and I can hit moving targets fairly well, but I have never in my life hunted and killed an animal, butchered it, cooked it and ate it. Fishing I can do (although some would disagree), but hunting I have never done. I say I could do it, but I am wholly untested. I have no doubt I could shoot an animal, but butchering it efficiently is another story. So as soon as someone has the patience to teach me, I will start working on my hunting skills, too.

            There is a lot left to learn to be a good Prepper. I have started out pretty well and continue to grow, but it is time to start filling in the gaps. I need to go from theory to practice.