Even though we have six nice glass lanterns with globes for our own use, several solar lights that can be charged during the day and brought in at night, three very nice LED lanterns, and enough “puck” light (LED’s) to light an airport (plus T-lights, votive candles, alcohol lanterns and Sterno), we know that in an emergency, there would be neighbors that would be without lights if the power went down.
One of the things that we’ve determined to keep adding to our emergency pantry are “hand out” candles for those neighbors to keep them from feeling so terribly threatened if the power goes out. The decision about whether or not to help out your neighbors is a personal one, but we see the benefit.
I remember a couple of years ago the power went down in our whole city, so knowing Mother relies on oxygen and doesn’t drive, we jumped in our vehicle and headed to her house.
When we went in the living room she was sitting in her recliner clutching her portable oxygen tank … in the dark with nothing but a hand held flashlight. She was VERY glad to see us! We decided then and there that she too needed LED’s. Not candles because her shaky hands would be dangerous with a match, etc.
Last year during a summer storm our neighbors took a lightning strike to a nearby tree that traveled the power line to the power box on the side of their house, knocking out the power to their complete house for several days waiting for the power company to come repair the outside lines and they had to repair their box and inside wiring. They were really happy when we walked across the alley with a few of our Dollar Tree candles and a puck light.
That is (in our opinion) good “community building”. They watch our home like a hawk! When a group of thugs tried to take MrWE2 down, they immediately called 911 and told them “you better get here in a hurry. This is an older couple and somebody is gonna get hurt”. When the dispatcher asked, “Are there any weapons?” They said, “Yes, the elderly man has a shotgun“.
These candles cost us $1 each and burn for hours and, as far we’re concerned, are priceless in community building. Letting people know you care about their welfare. We’re stocking up at the roost also for this very reason. Even though we haven’t “moved in” there yet, it’s our sort of “bug out location” and we’d be there if we had to leave here in an emergency.
That’s why we’re also planning to plant our raised bed garden right smack dab in the front yard at the Roost, to create curiosity and build relationships with the small neighborhood there (about 10 houses). We also think it creates the mindset that if we’re planting a garden we must need the food.
Even if it’s just a bag of T-lights, they’ll be worth handing out to your neighbors even if you have to walk a ways to get it to them. We can then show them how with a handful of bricks & twigs they can cook for themselves or heat a cup of the Ramen-type cup of soups with hot water for a warm meal…which we also plan to stock up on to give away.
We can buy cases and cases of Ramen noodles at Aldi’s for nickels and dimes and they would be worth their weight in gold if your neighbors are cold, hungry and in the dark.