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Self-reliance doesn't have to be expensive


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Many people are put off getting themselves a bit more squared away to ride out any disruption to their normal lives by thinking that they need loads of expensive kit. But if you think about it, there is so much that you can do by spending a pittance. Here are a few examples.

  • Lighting. B and Q - 200 unscented tea lights for £5. That'll keep you going through a dozen powercuts.
  • Matches. Large box of Cook's Matches 75p in Tesco. Buy a dozen, they'll never go out of date.
  • Batteries. Maplin. Box of 100 long life AA batteries, currently half price at £14.99. Who cares that they aren't Duracel at that price?

Has anyone else spotted any bargains out there over the Bank Holiday?

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Guest Stacka

I got a question......do you actively go shopping with a "what if" mentality in your mind?


I.e. "Holy shizzle.....200 tea lights for a fiver, that can keep me seeing at night for 100 days"


From a little experience of total devastation in countries, no power, no electricity, no water etc.. People just get on, people adapt, people just do what many kind is so very good at doing. Evolve

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We're not doing doomsday.
We're doing interruptions.

Personally,against powercuts, I do have a stash of easy to grab in the dark cyalumes and a couple of bags of tealights.

My last powercut was less than 4 months ago. And it was DARK! :)

(I also have a spare plug in phone for when the cordless goes down in a powercut. It ain't madness, it's common sense!)


Do I have enough for a 1, 2 or 3 month powercut? No.

As for evolving - I've seen Iraqis feeding their families bread cooked over fires of burning plastic. Dioxins straight into the mouths of their children. Being caught out ain't necessarily cool. ;):)

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Isn't 'evolution' a bit long term? Adaptation is the better word.

Of course,evolution has allowed the human species especially to be OK at adapting-we have a brain that has evolved to allow us to look ahead,and anticipate what may happen.To some extent.


What short term self reliance offers is time to make more profound adaptations,if need be,but it's still going to be in the few months scale (as I take it the thread is focussed on)-a temporary get by with less disruption,while the normal infrastructure is put back in place.

So candles are a good idea,ditto batteries,lots of tinned food-just more than a fortnights normal supply-and maybe some non normal-water tablets etc.

As BD shows,adaptation can bring risks-though so can hunger-these unfortunate children are victims of bio-chemical ignorance,and adults can hardly be blamed for that.(are deaths from cigarettes now at many millions,though by no means all are ignorant of the risks-some are to the shame of mega tobacco producers)..anyhow,there may need to be some short term/long term trade offs,ignorant or not.

Mostly,we are talking 'reducing inconvenience' and that is fine,all for it-good stock of matches and candles and tin cans.Several fridges/freezers-just a precaution against running out and no open all hours corner store out here in the boonies.

But no medical supplies beyon usual household- asian bird flue etc is most likely 'threat'-but then the local doctor is there-if he's gone,we are in a different scenario....

Robinson Crusoe (who adapted,didn't evolve-actually worried about regressing,except on Fridays.)


Lot's of sensible things can be done-most seem 'a bit more of the same-cf the 'weekly shop' not the 'hourly shop' or even 'daily shop'-we look ahead. Well,some do,others used varget :-)

and I suppose the anti radiation cellars might still pay off....but serious investment needs a clear eye,as to the real risks...but that's another thread,civilisation hanging by.

No Easter eggs on Easter island.






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  • 1 month later...
  • Matches. Large box of Cook's Matches 75p in Tesco. Buy a dozen, they'll never go out of date.


I got 500 matches for a pound in the supermarket yesterday. Ikea used to be good for candles, I think I'd rather pay more and not have to be herded round their one way system.

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