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Eight Most Forgotten Items From Your Bug-Out Bug

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When assembling your bug out bag you think to yourself the ‘rule of three’; three minutes without air, three hours without shelter, three days without water, and three weeks without food. You stocked up on N95 masks and invested in a couple of great gas masks for extra insurance. You studied how to make a lean-to ten different ways for each weather element you’ll be facing. You have a ton of lighters and tinder ready to start a fire anywhere at any time. You have multiple ways of filtering and purifying water. You gathered enough food and preservation knowledge to feed a small army for months, if not years. You begin to think to yourself you have just assembled the perfect bug-out bag. But, as the rule goes you’ll always forget one thing, and chances are it’s the most important.

8. Underwear
When you’re in hurry underwear is the last thing on your mind. Since it’s so commonly worn, it is often overlooked. The underwear protects us by preventing our outer layers of clothing from getting soiled by bodily fluids. Because of there absorbent quality, they make good water collectors for the morning dew. They also protect are “areas” from exposure and damage, and they give them much needed support. This sturdy design allows them to be turned into cordage and assist you in tree climbing. It provides us with an extra layer of warmth in cold climates. If the cold snap is brutal enough then the elastic band can be removed and used for tinder to make a fire to wait out the severely low temps.

7. Hand Tools
Power is always the first domino to fall in every disaster situation. So, unless you have a generator that beloved five hundred dollar power drill you got for your birthday last year will become expensive paperweight when the battery dies. Over the past fifty years, people have become less handy with tools, and more dependent on handymen/women for doing home repairs. Many Americans these days don’t even own a hammer, let alone know how to use one properly. Natural disasters alone cost us $306 billion a year, and that’s without zombies ripping off your doors. You’re going to need an array of tools to repair and maintain your home until help can arrive at your location. Tools can also be transformed into weapons to fight off the undead if short on ammo or if you need to perform a quick, silent kill. Mastering a craft like carpentry or tree removal can also give you a skill set to barter with your neighbors.

6. Something to Do
When bugging in waiting patiently for the herds of the undead to pass by you, you will need something to do quietly to past the time. We’re so focused on gathering the survival essentials we often forget about what to do during the pockets of downtime we might face. Trust me, there will be a lot of downtimes once you get settled in this new, hostile environment. For starters, there’s no greater feeling than getting lost in a good book, plus the pages can be used for kindling. You can create a bunch of fun games or activities with just a deck of cards or a note pad. Invent your time in learning a skill like knitting, candle making, or jewelry design so can have something to barter with for needed supplies. Journaling is also something you can do and it has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and anxiety.

5. Sewing Kit
What is life without a few bumps in the road. Tears in our clothes and missing buttons are everyday annoyances in our society. Usually, we just throw out the garment and buy a new one. However, in the apocalypse, there will be no more stores to get clothes from. So, you’ll need a pocket sewing kit to make your clothes lasted longer then what they were designed for. But, these little kits do more than just help us with our clothing troubles. Add one in your first aid kit for quick stitching of wounds or splinter removal. The tread can be used to set traps and snares. A safety pin can be turned into an emergency fishing hook. The needles can be magnetized and made into compasses.

4. Aluminum Foil
Foil is a cheap and versatile tool that is definitely worth the money. Foil can be used in cooking and water purification. It can be used as a reflector to signal help or start a fire. It can be shaped into bowls for eating out of. It can improve the strength of your antennas on the communication equipment. This is just to name a few ideas, I can go on and on, but, if you can think it, foil can be shaped into it.

3. Condoms
Are more than just a form of birth control. Non-lubricated condoms can serve as a 2-liter potable-water container. Their airtight design makes them a good waterproof casing for delicate electronics, valuables, weapons, and ammo clips. They can replace the band on your slingshot. They make a great fire tinder and can burn up to several minutes. You can slide them over your hands for quick gloves and feet for quick socks. Using a cattail you can craft a fishing bobber in a pinch. It can be stretch over a bowl or pot to create a durable lid.

2. Shoelaces
Shoelaces have many more uses then you could think of. Shoelaces make for handy alternative cordage when rope or paracord becomes unavailable. They can be used as fishing line and snare traps for small game hunting. They can help you with the assembling of a lean-to or other shelter. Throw a couple in your first aid kit to help tie up a splint or to make a strong tourniquet. You can use it to saw through zip ties for a quick escape if you get detained by the wrong people.

1. Umbrella
Umbrellas can do more than protect you from the elements like rain and winds. When turned upside down they can be used to collect rainwater. If long enough you can use it as a walking stick, or fashion it into a spear. Its dome top can provide you with a roof to your makeshift shelter. They can even assist in hunting by helping you build a quick and easy blind in a pinch.

We take a lot of basic everyday things for granted. To assemble a bug-out bag to fit your needs make a mental note of what you use every day and add those items to your bag. Each bag is unique and personal. Not all bags will fit your needs so do your best to craft one to help you get through the goods and the bads you know you’ll be facing.

M.L. Lewis

Written by M.L. Lewis

M.L. Lewis is not new to the world of writing. She has written various short stories and poems throughout the years and has won multiple awards in art and literature. The highest honor she received was Poet of the Year in 2000, and again in 2005. A poem she wrote in honor of law enforcement can be seen in the book, Everything You Wanted to Know about the Heroes in Blue. She was also featured in Encounter magazine for the volunteer work she did for the United States troops. In 2010 she won Resident of the Year in a local newspaper titled The South Hills Messanger. Today, she spends her time increasing her knowledge on disaster preparedness while working on her Ph. D. in Paranormal Studies.

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