Friday, September 25, 2009

Changes; First Aid; Get-home Bags

I’m very sorry about the nonexistent post this week, folks. I was already thinking about moving to Fridays because I have school on Wednesdays – but then one of the kittens tried to blind me with a well-placed jab right in the middle of my eye. That eye is still swollen – almost shut - so I’m having a tough time seeing much of anything. It turns out that you need both eyeballs for depth perception. I already knew that, but now I have firsthand experience to enhance my understanding. Yay me.

I also learned that having two contact-lens wearers in the house is a good thing because we have a bunch of saline solution. You might want to get some of this stuff even if nobody wears contacts: saline solution is great for flushing your eye following a cat scratch. Even though I adore all of my fur balls, I know that their claws aren’t the cleanest things on this planet. Flush well, folks, and do it more than once.

However, I am NOT a doctor and am not involved in the medical field in any way other than being the occasional patient. I would most definitely haul butt to the doctor’s office if I were you because your eye and sight are not things that you want to fart around with. We’re talking nasty infections, blindness, eye disease…all sorts of things that none of us really want to have happen.

While we’re on the subject of first aid: do you have kits in all of your vehicles as well as your home and bug-out or get-home bags? Multiple kits might seem redundant, but you might have to ditch the vehicle at some point – if that happens and you forget to grab the kit, you’re screwed if you cut yourself or get debris in your eye. It’s better to have multiple kits spread out as far as I’m concerned.

Oh, and don’t forget to check the supplies. Adhesives can lose effectiveness over time and, even though it’s safe to use most medicines after their expiration dates (within reason, of course), fresher is usually better. A visual inspection also jump starts your mind, which can help you notice an important item that you didn’t think about when you first assembled the kits.

There really isn’t much else to say about first-aid kits other than the fact that it’s a good idea to store all of your supplies in a waterproof case. You never know when you’ll encounter moisture, rain, flood water, etc. along the way, so keeping the first-aid supplies dry and clean is a priority.

I also, recently, checked my get-home bag’s contents. It’s always a good idea to rotate your supplies when needed and make sure that everything is still in good working condition. I changed from an old backpack to an ALICE pack because the backpack was dry rotting when I dug it out of storage…and because I got the ALICE pack for a really-good price at the newly-opened milsurp store in town. I used this type of pack when I was in the Army, so I already knew that it’s comfortable, durable, and roomy: mine holds all of my essential gear with a little space left over for other stuff.

This time around, I added a few pull-top cans of food: ravioli, mostly, because I love that stuff whether it’s hot, warm, or cold. Even though it’s easy to heat up a can of food – camp fire, engine compartment, the sun, whatever – I don’t know that I’ll necessarily be able to do any of those things.

While you’re checking the supplies, don’t forget to inspect the bag. Make sure that the straps aren’t rotting or worn and that the seams are all in good condition. You really don’t want the bag to fall apart or tear when you’re out in the woods or the side of the road, right? Right.

My eye’s starting to really hurt again, so that’s about it for today. Take care, folks, and keep on doing what you’re doing. Progress is slow sometimes – my family and I are in that stage right now, in fact – but keep moving forward. Things improve soon enough if you stick with them.

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“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
-George OrwellAnimal Farm