UrbanSurvival – for real – Heart of in the BlizTex

Super short this morning because Elaine and I are short of power.

No matter how much contingency planning you do, a high of 8 F and chills well below zero – are not the kind of thing you normally plan for.

Here’=’s the national picture and this snap of all the cold parts will ove to the right as the week progresses…

Our SitRep: People

Elaine is just n9-days from her right hipe replacement,  Still some pain  in the right incision area, but only occasional joint pain (dull).  Major focus for her is rest with exercise breaks.

Zeus the Cat has to be thrown out to pee and poo  he’ at the door within 5=min, though.  No fool.

Ure (his crisis managing old self) is fine.  Great experience (but then, so’s death, I hear, lol).  The sore knee is improved, rest is good, solar panels were ncleared off.  So some power and web acce3ss survives.

(Publishing to this point)

SitRep: Systems

  • Food:  We still have a totally topped off larder.  There is a ton in the freezers, plus I picked up from freezer rolls and bread dough so we can bake  on the BBQ (70 lb tank),
  • Water:  No sign of freezing – yet.  Cold tap water is running about 39.7 F – so keeping an eye on that.  Main high-payback strategy wa blocking off the under house vents for crwlspace and running th house propane heat hot (78) which kept things warm for us and which means no frozen pipes yet.  In the guest room, 450 rolls of toilet paper and thry wont’ freeze.  We have 5+gllons of water in containers on counter.  And on fwd plan, we will be back to our “blue water barrels” soon enough when temps firs over 32 in coming days.  This doesn’t count 5-gallons avail in toilet,  How Water is a distint memory, though.  Dishes by hand in cold water – like camping as a kid.
  • Environment:  Septic’s are working well.  Elaine’s pain meds in stock along with the anti-clot post surg injectables,.  the “bedside commode” hasn’t been graced by my asss, yt, but in the septic’s (2 systems) falter, there’s a “sh*t chute) and the woods, lol,
  • Energy:  Self congratulatory part here.  Best investments in terms of payoffs:  Large vent less propane heater being installed and at the ready.  Electricity:  We are just passing the 24-hour mark this morning.   This is total down, not part of the rolling blackouts.  Today, we will get the two laptops over onto the solar system for a good recharge – something to keep (we3 hope) Peoplenomics going tomorrow on sked.  Propane use hasn’t made a dent, yet:  400 gallons is all a 500″ nameplate tank really holds, but no drawdown on the tank noted.  Still have 1/3rd of the 70 pounder and two 20 pounders full, so we don’t plan to starve.
  • Shelter:  House is doing well – we will see how a “regular mobile” fares with a second dump of frozen prceip due tomorrow and Thurs.
  • Transportation:  Power crews are not anywhere near getting things back up due to ice and snow  If I need to, I’ll plow out to the county road (which will also be unplowed but which may be compacted).  Joys of 4X4 diesels,  Both cars haven’t been tough – we will get into them on the backside of Big Thaw,
  • Communications:  Limited 2-meter and lots of HF capability due to the oversized solar.
  • Finance3s:  Before storm hit, we made sure both credit cards were zeroed.  Markets are set to open higher (crisis is good for market, remember our discussions of synthetic growth?

Overall:

Best training process for prepping an ETex Outback place was getting our sailboat ready for going offshore back in 2000.   Plan on no help.  Didn’t think also plan on Ice Sheets returning,, lol.  Forces you to go through systems thinking and spot the failures in advance.

We haven’t even had to dig  into the deeper levels of prepping yet (rocket stove with charcoal for cooking, outdoors of course, for example – and yes, we have 120 lb of charcoal and magnesium fire-started ands…)

More after charging around noonish…

Write when you get rich,

George@Ure.net

author avatar
George Ure
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/George-Ure/e/B0098M3VY8%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share UrbanSurvival Bio: https://urbansurvival.com/about-george-ure/

16 thoughts on “UrbanSurvival – for real – Heart of in the BlizTex”

  1. Here is a question that Texans should ask their electric company: how come their colleagues in North Dakota can build wind turbines that operate in sub zero temperatures but Texans can’t keep their turbines working below 10 F? Just asking.

    From the Great White North

    • Low bids and political climate scam do come to mind…
      Look up the ground leases for wind sites and then trace back, cross tab to campaign contributions.
      See how payoffs and paybacks work, yet?

      • Rinse Repeat – Foreign Aid

        This is why lying scum in con-gress are alwayz giving away Billionz –

        We be tracking the kickbacks/quidproquo.
        ..see creepys son on Urisma board in da Ucrane.

        This IS * THE SCAM *
        This is the main conduit for illicit funding/feathering of ones own nest – when in the employ of US Govt/peeps.

        Think about pallets of CASH sent to Iran under the desolate one – see PAC/contributions/sweetheart business deals for spouses – aint that right- nasty piglousey? She who set up the Capitol insurrection, complicit in holding back ready reserves, complicit in planning the whole shebang w/antifa/blm ? – why I never…

    • “how come their colleagues in North Dakota can build wind turbines that operate in sub zero temperatures”

      They can’t.

      What they CAN do is put the electronics (which would normally shut down at either 21°F or 14°F) in a heated cabinet inside the windmill’s head. The windmill manufacturer probably charges $10k+ for the 300w-1kw heater that keeps everything toasty. That $10k is not “economically justifiable” in Texas because “99% uptine” is considered “good enough…”

  2. Sorry you are going through this painful Canadian weather experience. With icicles hanging off windmills and solar farm panels covered in a foot of snow, it is a strong lesson that fossil fuels aren’t going away anytime soon.

    Stay warm

    BIC (Bob in Cold Canada)

  3. *Sad about how UN resilient the Texas Power Grid has proved to be.
    *Sad about how badly some Texas city water systems were designed wrt powering their pumping plants (resulting in hundreds of thousands having NO or UNSAFE water)

    I can understand the “plow” and “road” situation in Texas when you get a once in 30 year storm or power going off due to limbs taking out lines … but an electrical system that ends up having to cut off nearly 15 million people either fully or with rotating blackouts for at least one day and maybe more where they are off more than on is NOT a well designed robust system.

    What Texas is getting is just a normal winter storm event up here in North Country … but of course up here we expect it and build for it. (this week our temps have been Texas’s range temps and I have about 8″ to 12″ on the ground, more to come later this week, and I am NOT even in the snow belt – up there double to triple my snow levels). Other than a slow drive home from work last night, unexpected freezing rain first then snow on top of the ice, and having to shovel the drive this AM from the 6″ we got overnight it is no big deal – except the kids get “a” snow day (ONE).

    (fwiw up here mobile homes and double wides come out of the factory built for some snow and cold … go up to upstate NY, upper Michigan, or Minnesota and the ones sold are built to even a higher standard for withstanding cold weather and heavy roof snow loads)

    Glad to hear that both of you are doing OK. Biggest longer term issue with a hard freeze that an area is not used to is WATER and preventing pipes from freezing and breaking!! Once the temps go back above freezing as long as your pipes are OK then you can bounce back to full normal quickly, as in a day or so, once the power comes back on. If you have broken pipes then depending upon the damage it can take someone days or weeks, and lots of money sometimes, to get everything repaired and be back to normal.

    Take lots of pictures!! You may never get another Texas snow like this!

    • “but of course up here we expect it and build for it”

      Even though for us that is barbecue and golf weather for us around these parts..for them it’s just as big of a shock as if it was 70 here then dips to 0 in one massive move..that’s way one drastic change at one time.. or the first snow.
      Considering the shock and the fact that those temps aren’t heard of it has to be one miserable time and hard to cope with. Does anyone even own a snow shovel. No one is prepared.. I’m sure everyone is scrambling trying to get use to and prep for the unexpected.

  4. Interesting to note George, I found a can of Chew. I forgot I bought on my trip to Alaska. Never opened it because it because I quit chewing in March of 2009.

    Coincidentally, the day I quite chewing the market reversed it’s Course and we been in a Bull Market ever since.

    Grizzly Green. My favorite flavor.

    I didnt even realize that until this morning, when I put a big fat dip in for the first time since the big collapse in September 2008.

    When I discovered Grizzley Green.

    I’m sure, I’m sure I’m not that big of deal. Just a funny little coincidence. Lol

    Stay warm, just got home from the gym about an hour ago, put in a big dip, got a hot cup of coffee and gonna go meditate for a while.

    Hope the power comes back on for yah. I love hot itallian food. Lol

  5. It’s all about ‘preparedness’. George has a new item to add to the ‘threat list’… COLD! I grew up in Wisconsin in these cold winters. I have been outdoors working in -60F temperature. You always plan for survival. My brother and nephew spend summers collecting deadwood from county forests and stacking cords of wood for winter. Both have natural gas to the house that they rarely use. A wood stove in the basement heats their houses all winter… power or not. Nephew has a plow on his Jeep and keeps the neighborhood driveways clear for his good neighbors.

  6. George, I’ve had virtually the same weather that Ure dealing with, but two days earlier. Sunday it was +8 during the day and -8 at night. At least the ground was warm before this blast, so the water feed to the house is OK. It’s never frozen in the last 30 years, so I’ll just trust that it’ll stay that way. There’s plenty of spare water available where it won’t freeze.

    I divided my house into five sections(including garage and shop) with exterior doors and I can heat just one. That’s what I’m doing now. Open plan houses are energy intensive and don’t have an easy fallback if necessary. In the living room I have a wood stove, gas ventless unit(fan optional), and a torpedo heater standing by that can do the entire house if everything else failed. It can run from an inverter and battery connected to any car, truck, or tractor. The two remote bathrooms each have a 100 watt incandescent light bulb burning for this cold snap and the rooms are noticeably warm. The central(gas) system is almost never used. The living room is 75 degrees from the woodstove alone and the kitchen is 38 degrees. The wood was and is cut from what’s on the property. There’s plenty more. Today I’m not leaving the house unless it gets warm(LOL), and perhaps tomorrow I”ll plow what I need to along with the adjacent street, since I doubt anyone else will get to it.

    For those that worry, I’m quite aware of and monitor carbon monoxide.

    The weather(comedy) channel claimed that we’d have an exceptionally warm winter this year. I’m waiting.

    Best wishes for happy and complete healing for both of you!

  7. Don’t worry about propane. We heat the whole 1880’s farmhouse on around 600 gal. yearly. Used to take around 1000 gal. till I Insulated and replaced windows and doors. Been years since we had a cold spell like this, Your temps. are as low as ours. I used to have a dedicated run to your area and cannot imagine this kind of cold down there.

    And you might not know where the pipes burst till they thaw. I have all pvc and keep glue, spare pipe and joints and caps for temporary repairs.

  8. As I pointed out years ago, no survival plan is complete without underground space to retreat to, with multiple reasons to go there. When the pioneers first arrived on land to homestead, the first thing they did was build underground shelter, usually into a hill and it was fronted with a sod wall. Never plowed virgin sod was 6-10” thick and cut into sections that could be handled by one or two people. Windows were added as resources allowed, and when a house was built, the windows removed, the openings sealed and the “soddie” became a storage area. Temperature would rarely drop below 50, and never rise above 70 in the summer, and many were heated with just body heat and a cook stove burning Buffalo or cow chips.

    In my part of Nebraska, every house had a basement, sometimes construction stopped, the basement was roofed and called a “basement house.” Then the rest of the house finished as resources allowed. There were even cases where tornadoes took the house, the family survived because they were in the basement, and then just lived there until they rebuilt.

    Underground is easily done with a 20 or 40 foot shipping container buried 3/4 into a hillside with the exposed top roofed. Beware, though. My engineer friend tells me that a container will not support the lateral stress if completely buried unless it is reinforced, or the earth is not against the sides of the container. A friend of mine just refurbished a 40 foot container above ground for a mother in law quarters. Container came with the property. Completely finished and with a metal roof covering a concrete patio as well, has a 10 foot storage area accessed by sliding glass doors. Cost completely furnished was about $7 grand at Ecuador prices. There are tons of designs/blueprints available for converting containers.

    • “sometimes construction stopped, the basement was roofed and called a “basement house.”

      The most beautiful place I’ve ever seen is just that. Years ago a young couple was given an old farm house. The plan was to get the basement done with a walkout then move the house on top. They started to run out of money.. finished the basement put a roof on and liked it so much the old farmhouse never went on top. They have a patio pool garden all year round .. the earth insulates it .. I havent seen this but was told by mom that the kids put a basement under it for storage. The place is gorgeous..

  9. “Zeus the Cat has to be thrown out to pee and poo ”

    Lol lol miss sniffs everywhere hates to go until she picks the perfect spot.. 38 below ( not wind chill) she finally says what the heck and goes.. she had been holding the poo lol lol lol

  10. George, my girlfriend is 6 weeks removed from her hip replacement surgery that took place at the end of December. My girlfriend was told by the PA at the hospital where the surgery was done that she may be able to resume a more normal life after 12 weeks have elapsed. However, she shouldn’t expect to be able to perform some basic functions, like touching her toes while standing up.

    The hospital bill ($100k) is astronomical and she is working with me and others to declare most, if not all of it as null and void as the surgery was performed as an emergency procedure and she did not have the strength to give informed consent. I am trying hard to get her off the opioid medications and pain-pills that she’s been given. Detoxing and easing the opioid withdrawal process is an important goal. She suffered from extreme mercury poisoning two decades ago, and now she’s dealing with massive amounts of chromium and titanium in her body from the hip replacement.

    How well is Elaine recovering from her hip replacement?

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