This is why I don't frequent the survival forum more often.
For half a century I have seen similar failures, with of course far less severe consequences. Near me are certain houses that tend to get a new
owner/tenant every year or so. There's nothing wrong with the houses (some are the nicest around), but there is something wrong with the area: it's
not in the city.
People move in, wanting to "get back to nature" or "live simply" or "take life easy". They move in and everything is fine for a couple weeks.
Then they leave something edible outside at night and someone's dog decides to take advantage of it. They realize that the pizza delivery service
stops 5 miles away, and they have to meet the delivery guy halfway. The wind changes direction and brings a reminder that some people grow food around
here, including cattle and swine. They don't like the taste of well water, preferring the recycled sewage they are used to.
Something small always happens, and it's downhill from there. Within a year, they go back to their city life, or at least somewhere a little closer
to it. The house sits empty for a little while and the whole process starts all over.
Now that is a far cry from what this guy pulled, to be sure, but really it's the same thing as well. He probably had this whole scenario figured out
in his mind about how things would work once he hit the sticks, and someone forgot to inform the sticks.
Humans are weak. We have no real natural weapons... teeth are not sharp enough, mouth doesn't open wide enough to take a decent bite out of
something. Our nails are flimsy thin little things instead of claws. We have precious little fur compared to other species. Our eyesight is pretty
good, in color at least, but not the best in the animal kingdom. Our other senses are poorly developed: smell, hearing, even tactile has severe
limitations. We are laughable trying to run or climb or swim compared to other species. Our muscles are weak for their size. We have allergies,
maladies, a myriad of potential medical issues from what other creatures take in stride. We have no survival instinct to tell us what to do. All we
have is our intelligence.
With that, we can learn how to anticipate the reactions of less intelligent animals. We can compensate for lack of fur with clothing or enclosures
with fires. We can make our own claws and teeth from sticks or rocks or even bones... and make them sharper, make them strike from farther away, make
them more versatile. We can even improve our senses through technology. But that also means we need the technology, and that means we need...
Out here, where there really is no civilization, people survive and even thrive not on brawn or skill, but on each other. We pride ourselves on our
independence, yes, but also we understand how important each of us is to the others. In the city, a flat tire beside the road without a spare means
you call someone to come help; out here the same situation stops every other vehicle that passes and someone sticks their head out the window and asks
"You guys need help?"
Fall on hard times in the city, and you contact charities for aid. Fall on hard times here, and things just seem to miraculously happen... everyone
seems to suddenly need help emptying a stuffed freezer, or everyone's garden is producing too much for them to eat, or grocery bags will miraculously
appear on your front porch. The elderly have plenty of company, because everyone who knows them is concerned that something bad might happen, and they
stay close. It's the same dependency on others as in the city, even more so because there is no requirement for financial repayment... the repayment
is through paying things forward.
Once you go into a lone survival situation, all that is gone. You have no one to call upon. If you fall, you either get up or you don't. If some
predator decides you're lunch, either you outrun them, outfight them, or digest. If the weather gets too cold, you either get warm or never get warm
again. If you get sick, you either get over it or you don't.
That's a whole different ball game than living in a city, a suburb, or even way back in these mountains like I do.
Bottom line: everyone who knows anything about survival knows this one rule: never do it unless you have to. If you can manage to live around others,
that is your best chance to survive. No one knows every skill needed to survive on their own, and while a handful might manage it, it is foolhardy to
try it for laughs. I can go for a week in this mountain easily, but I prefer an easier life... that's why I have a house.
Learn what you can, and shy from some of the modern conveniences if you wish... but take those steps slowly and remember that looking-glass with the
swirling images in your living room is for entertainment... not for life-and-death information.
And please... don't move farther away from the city than you really want to be.