Monday, April 21, 2014

R.R. #2 Survival Skills

Oh, my, I have been away from the farm for a very long time. But let's not forget that I learned lessons there that can serve me well if indeed I should be caught in an emergency situation. Most of my friends are town born and raised. They are resourceful people, yet I know that I have an advantage. For one thing, none of them have ever lived without indoor plumbing. Hm. Disadvantage.

We didn't camp when I was a kid, but I can manage without the necessities of home, cooking over a fire, sleeping in the wild and learning from TV that staying with someone who does not repel you is great in case heat is lacking. I could fish with a string and safety pin pulling those slimy earthworms out of their homes. I can chop off the head of a fish and wring the neck of a chicken....neither of which I have done but have seen it many times. I call it on-line learning since the chickens hung from the clothesline and the fish was caught on a line. I can pick up a dried cow patty to toss on a fire. I can open a box of dried matches and light the fire. (Okay, I'm not perfect!)

My friends would cringe at all of the above. They would scoff at eating all parts of a chicken or at frying up a few frog legs. Crawdads would probably send them screaming. I could go on and on. And, I could in the meantime confuse myself as to just how easily I could survive. For one thing, after a night on the cold ground, I would be unable to walk the next day. I probably would make friends with the chickens and get poison ivy on my keister in the woods. I may be a farm kid all grown up, but time has taken its toll.

However, when faced with an emergency, I think that we kids of the earth would go into an automatic mode and take charge doing what we must for ourselves and our families. The lessons we learned from farming and the life with the soil taught us to be tough and to endure. We didn't live lavish lives. We lived the life that was handed down from generations of people working the soil, clearing the land, suffering the new-hand dealt each year be it illness, poor crops, diseased animals. My parents forged ahead doing the best they could with what they had. This is how we learned what we are made of.

With so many catastrophes in the world, we can't sit back and ignore the fact that we just might meet up with something we have never experienced before. I guess I write this today to tell those of you who grew up as a farm kid that we had it good. We learned life lessons, we learned how to work and how to live, we learned that we could even town.