Good Afternoon Wasteland. I hope you've enjoyed our morning music selection. Now its time for something intellectual to chew on with your lunchtime rations. Today's concern is - every day's concern.
Its been a long time since the trains ran regularly and the quarries were dug, and the shipping containers moved from one port to the next. A lot of you are getting tired of sitting around in your city-state, and others are worried that the local area has been stripped clean of raw materials. Some leaders and individuals might even have decided its time for them to make their own nation rather than let the US rebuild itself. That means a lot of new homesteads are going to start appearing, and a lot of people are going to be moving into the zone, and clashing with its environment, reanimates, and indigenous scavengers.
I wish there was one piece of advice or at least a convenient acronym I could give to ensure all of you a safe adventure. I got about half way there with "WANTS" but that still isn't quite enough. Some fore-warning is better than nothing, so I'm sharing that first half today, while Diego tries to summarize the rest for our next transmission.
W. A. N. T. S. - Wants. Water, Accommodations, Nutrition, Tools, Stability.
Its a two edged sword. You need it to stay alive, you need it to plant crops. But you also have to give di-hydrogen monoxide its due.
Its been half a decade since anyone's maintained a dam, or checked the over-flow valves on industrial plants.You can never bee to sure if the level is going to rise dangerously during the rain, or there is a toxic level of contaminates. In almost every case, its better to find a bridge or make one than swim across. Some places might be cleaner to be sure - but verify first.
Don't get caught outside after dark. Its easy to deal with reanimates when forewarned, and near impossible when surprised.Visible fires attract attention you might not want, and its hard to fortify a tent against alien war machines and undead pack-hunters.
Water and housing makes sure you don't die, but its food that keeps you alive. Its also a commodity to trade, and a pre-requisite for expanding and increasing the labor pool.
You're in the zone for something, and you must be able to do it. Now "the right tool for the right job" can be trumped with a little ingenuity - but being prepared pays dividends.
Despite the difficulties, its easy to mistakenly believe that you have everything you need. But even if you've got a dry hide-y-hole stocked with food and everything you need to create a new garden of Eden you're still missing something. You need other people. A reason to be doing this. No real point for a castle when there is no kingdom - and even less of a point when the king is mad.
You don't just need to survive, you have to want to. You need to be happy, include the occasional creature comfort, and have a release from the work of building a new world. Even god didn't make the world all at once and knew when to take a break.