Prepper Diary September 4: A Homestead Update

We face our second hurricane in two weeks, prepare for cooler temperatures and ready our bees to get through the winter.

We survived the aftermath of Hurricane Ida unscathed. It must have brushed by us, saving its anger for folks in New York and New Jersey. We got less rain and less wind than we did with Fred. The power was out for less than two hours.

There was a period of wind when there was a tremendous banging outside. I had to put on my muck boots and my poncho and head out there to batten down the hatches. The big gate to the garden and had blown open. It was slamming against the pole with every gust of wind. I latched it and added a couple of bungee cords to minimize bounce.

I am not sure whether our chickens are brave or stupid. Most of them would rather hang around outside in the rain than in their coop. As a result, I delay letting them out when it is pouring. Our four roosters are all crowing now, but have not been loud enough to wake me up. Still, the day is coming where we have to eliminate at least two of them before they kill each other.

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Prepper News Update September 4: September is the New December

Shop Now for Christmas – September is the New December

“A lot of families are not going to be able to get the toys they want” this year, according to the CEO of a toy manufacturer. As we reported yesterday in our post about looming shortages, shop now if you want to get something specific for Christmas. Otherwise, Santa may strike out. This article gives some interesting bits of news: Amazon and Home Depot are chartering their own cargo ships to bring in goods, and publishers are being affected by paper shortages, delaying some book release dates.

It’s Happening Again: Americans are Stocking Up on Toilet Paper

Thanks to Delta, retailers are once again struggling to stock enough toilet paper and paper towels, even as manufacturers ramp up, according to this article from the Wall Street Journal. Clorox says it expects to be able to keep up with demand for its popular wipes and sprays only after significantly increasing capacity.

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New York Flooding Reminds us why it is Important to Prep for the Unexpected

We have hurricane hunters, weather radar, apps on our phones, and emergency notification, but sometimes things still catch us by surprise.

Some of the biggest disasters this country has experienced happen by surprise. Pearl Harbor. 9/11. The Mount St. Helens volcanic eruption in 1980. The 1994 Northridge Earthquake.

Many personal disasters and emergencies also happen without warning, from a heart attack to getting laid off. Being a victim of a crime is usually unexpected, as is being in an accident. Bam, your life changes in an instant.

But who would have guessed that a hurricane that came ashore in Louisiana would kill at least 40 people in New York and New Jersey days later? But that is exactly what happened when the remnants of Hurricane Ida flooded subways, floated cars on major highways, closed roads, caused water in apartment buildings and storefronts, spun of tornadoes and caused massive flooding and property damage. (Click here for images and videos.)

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As Hurricane Ida Heads Toward New Orleans, Bugging Out Makes Sense

Hurricane Ida strengthened thanks to warm Gulf water and is expected to make landfall on Sunday night. Damage may be felt across multiple states.

While I prefer bugging in over bugging out, sometimes bugging out makes a great deal of sense. Nuclear plant melt downs are a good example. Massive chemical leaks are another. Wildfires, under many circumstances, and for coastal residents, I recommend bugging out when facing a powerful hurricane.

Hurricane Ida, which is in the Gulf of Mexico and may be a category 4 storm with winds up to 140 miles per hour when it hits New Orleans, is a perfect example. It could be another Katrina.

A Katrina Repeat

For those who don’t remember, Katrina killed 1,800 people. The storm flooded large parts of New Orleans, and left $125 billion in damage across Louisiana and into Mississippi. What I remember most about the event is endless footage of Coast Guard and National Guard choppers rescuing people from their rooftops. I had a friend from a local police department who deployed to New Orleans to help with search and rescue. He said what the TV didn’t show was the hundreds of bodies floating in the water-filled streets of New Orleans.

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Just a Short Update and Prepper News Recap

Not much going on around the homestead today, so I did chores and got things prepper in case storms from Hurricane Elsa get this far.  I fed the chickens, added a super to another beehive, fed the weakest beehive, stacked firewood, paid some bills, and a friend came over to visit.  My wife went to the farmer’s market and then to Yoga, so I took a nap.

Like much of the East, we are expecting some rain associate with Elsa, but probably not a serious storm.  The heaviest weather should be to our east.  That should keep me indoors long enough to do some woodworking.

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Prepper News Update July 5

The Problem With Carrying Guns in An Anti-Gun State

This story about cops closing I-95 because of 11 armed men has been all over the news over the last couple days, but if you look beyond the headline, it has several lessons for preppers: One, be discrete; don’t stand on the highway in a rabidly anti-gun state like Massachusetts with visible rifles and shotguns. Two, if you need to refuel your vehicle, going to a gas station and using a pump will attract far less attention than doing it on the side of the road. If you must refuel from gas cans, take an exit and do so in a location that is less likely to attract attention than the side of an interstate highway. Three, don’t live in and avoid traveling through anti-gun states like Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Illinois, and California. Four, when traveling between states, even states that recognize your concealed carry permit, follow Federal laws about transporting long guns between states.

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Prepper News Update, July 2

Tropical Storm Elsa Heads Towards U.S.

We’re just one month into Hurricane Season and Tropical Storm Elsa has formed in the Atlantic and is slated to head into the Caribbean, then on to South Florida and possibly continue on up to hit the pan handle or wander into the Gulf. Better keep an eye on this one, folks, as it may develop into a hurricane. This is the earliest storm ever with an “E” name, possibly foretelling a deadly hurricane season with multiple storms.

Drought to Cause Higher Food Prices

Unfortunately, Tropical Storm Elsa won’t have any impact on the drought out west. The Wall Street Journal says, “While high inflation for some goods and services might prove to be transitory, the run-up in prices for food staples such as beef, pork and milk might be extended by the effects of severe drought.” Besides those staples, expect to see higher prices for fruits, vegetables, and almonds, which are grown in California. Global food prices in May were 40 percent higher than last May.

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September 11: Natural Disasters Threaten as we Remember 9/11

The attacks on 9/11 were unexpected, but America rose to the occasion. How unfortunate that we cannot do so in the face of COVID-19.

I am old enough to have been at work when the airplanes hit the twin towers.  A friend called me, and I turned on the TV in time to see the second plane.  Having left New York less than 10 years before, seeing the buildings collapse, the wall of ash, and the hordes of people walking uptown on streets I had once stood on made it very real for me.

Not much work got done that day.  Video streaming wasn’t a thing yet, so because I had one of the few TVs on the floor, so people kept coming in to watch for a few minutes and then go back to their desks and try to get some work done. 

I think it is a shame that they will not let the traditional memorial service be held this year.  It would do us well to remember how that attack united us as a country and even Democrats were proud to fly the flag and call themselves patriots.  (At least for a while.)

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August 29: Hurricanes, Riots and Guns, Oh My!

Hurricane Laura is bringing heavy rain to the Mid Atlantic sates while protesters are bringing spray paint, fireworks and violence to cities across the country.

The death toll for Hurricane Laura has climbed to 14 in the U.S. and more than 800,000 people are without power.  Remnants of the storm headed north into Arkansas before heading east today, bringing heavy rains and wind across the Mid-Atlantic states and parts of the South. 

The 12th named storm of the year, Laura came ashore earlier than any other L-named storm in history.  Future storms are still possible and could target vulnerable sections of the Gulf or East Coast. Prep now, before it is too late.

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August 27: Hurricane Laura Thunders Ashore

Hurricanes, riots, looting, shootings, a rising crime rate and failing cities make this an excellent time to embrace prepping.

Hurricane Laura roared ashore in the middle of the night, hitting Lake Charles, La., and the surrounding area.  Early reports are that there is extensive damage to buildings, including commercial buildings in the downtown area.  Winds and storm surge were so high that calls for rescue by those who refused to evacuate have had to go unanswered.

While folks in Louisiana and Texas braced for a natural disaster, man-made problems erupted across the country. Rioting and looting broke out again in Minneapolis after an armed suspect sought by police committed suicide.  Security cameras recorded him shooting himself but this incident still provided all the excuse locals needed to attack Target CVS, Walgreens, Foot Locker, a liquor store, apparel stores, and multiple restaurants.

Seems like some folks are just looking for an excuse to loot.

Meanwhile, the Republican National Convention speakers are using the violent protests, rising crime rates and defund the police movement to drive home their point that Democrats are soft on crime socialists who have no problem destroying businesses and want to release criminals from jail.  The riots may have been intended to create chaos and weaken the president but as things get out of hand the pendulum is swinging the other direction. 

COVID-19 By the Numbers

The U.S. reported 44,934 new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours as well as an additional 1,193 deaths. Global cases have surpassed 24.27 million while deaths were up over 7,000.