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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 12:24 pm 
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I just finished your pandemic story. Good stuff!
Thanks for your recipe post too!

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:03 pm 
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Cavediver wrote:
I just finished your pandemic story. Good stuff!
Thanks for your recipe post too!


Glad you liked it. Its about in its third major edit and I hope to finish it in the next couple of months. I've got the additions about half way finished with lots of handwritten notes on the remaining sections, including a new epilogue. One of these days I'll finallly be able to let that piece go without fiddling with it.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:12 pm 
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Day Nine

I almost didn’t journal tonight. Everything has been a struggle and no one has had much fun except for maybe Johnnie who seems to thrive on chaos. Somewhere around mid-afternoon I heard Scott mumble, “PMS or Zombies; not a hell of a lot of difference if you ask me.” I almost laughed. Almost. Poor guy.

I was seriously dragging when I got up this morning but I still remembered to give the bread starter a good squish. Not too many more days and I’ll be able to bake us a nice, sweet loaf of bread.

Breakfast: These high labor breakfasts are really time-consuming. I voted that on some days mom just needs a break. I figure that high labor meals can be alternated with easier meals even if I’m cooking from scratch. This is one of those mornings that it was just too hard for me to face a skillet or baking dish. Instead I broke out the instant oatmeal. I was able to have just about every flavor known to man fully-stocked because Winn Dixie used to have these really great BOGO sales and I would load up every chance I got. I also have several tubs of plain oatmeal as well as dried fruit and the direction to make my own “instant” oatmeal when the store bought stuff runs low. Let’s hear it for ingenuity. The problem with letting everyone pick their favorite flavor though was that I had several different boxes open at once. I emptied those packages into a storage box with see-through sides.

I wound up breaking down the packaging and sticking it in the garbage can of things that will burn. Last week the municipal garbage was still running and the first pick up for this week has already run, but it ran a lot later than it normally does and there has been some noise on the radio about how some pick up routes were missed. By separating the garbage into burnable, compostable, and non-compostable but potentially useful, and non-compostable and non-reusable its made for less to be picked up and better organization in case garbage collection becomes haphazard or non-existent. With the way things are going, I wouldn’t be surprised to see municipal services begin to break down within the next couple of weeks.

Lunch: After the oatmeal for breakfast everyone was ready for a “real” lunch. I wasn’t ready for any real cooking though. I made Caesar Chicken Tetrazzini. This used up the last little bit of Caesar salad dressing from the frig. I tossed that together with a can of chicken, a small can of mushrooms, and a couple other odds and ends and then mixed it with cooked spaghetti noodles. The only critique was that there wasn’t any garlic breadsticks to go with the meal. With a little more forethought I could have pulled that off, but the forethought was still in bed where the cook wished to be.

Bread, bread, bread. Man oh man, getting all the bread that my family is used to having is getting pretty labor – not to mention ingredient – intensive. Good thing I took the time to gather recipes for bread items that aren’t completely dependent on straight flour before the situation got critical. A recipe for this stuff called Silly Dilly Bread that is made from cake mix but that is still savory, rather than sweet was just the ticket to go with tonight’s dinner. It called for Swiss cheese, but the closest thing I had was a bunch of those little, shelf-stable Swiss cheese-like triangles left over from a holiday gift package. All of the triangles together only made about a cup of shredded cheese, but that was all I needed.

The bread batter didn’t take long to make and then I put it into the pans and left it to rise. Since the recipe made enough for two pans of bread, there was bread with dinner and another loaf for tomorrow.

Dinner: I made an old family favorite called Five Can Tuna Casserole to go with the Silly Dilly Bread. Not very exciting, but another pan of popcorn sprinkled with some Parmesan served while we family played a round of board games made everyone feel more satisfied.

As for how other things are going, I suppose it goes without saying that all of New England is now in an uproar. Its not so much NRS from what we can tell from all the news reports, although there is some of that too, its generalized civil unrest. A lot of people are in a panic. Food is running low and its taking military personnel and national guard troops to safeguard deliveries of groceries and other essential goods. There’s only so many delivery caravans that can be guarded at any given time. And since it is August a lot of gardens up north are starting to wind down and people are going to have to make do with whatever they already have put away. There are still some apple and pear harvests to come but nothing in the urban centers. The cost of winter heating had already taken a lot of people’s savings so there’s not much left to pay the inflated prices of items that do make it into the stores. People are already complaining of price gouging.

Here in Tampa I’m just now starting to get my main garden planted. I mostly plant things in containers but I do have a few beds that I need to finish prepping.

There weren't any new cases of NRS reported in Tampa today. That is a relief as a lot of people had expected the numbers to increase exponentially. They did mention that they had to commit the wife of the dead EMT. Apparently they didn’t have a chance to notify her before she saw it all on television in bright freaking Technicolor. She is supposedly six months into a high-risk pregnancy on top of everything else. I just can’t imagine. Don’t want to imagine.

Which brings me to the only real bright spot of the day. Scott didn’t go into work today. It wasn’t just the hormones that had me weeping when I heard his decision.

The reason why he chose to stay home was that he had found another stash of stuff at the old “sugar daddy” place. Scott tried to haul away an old, enclosed trailer that was behind the duplex. The code enforcement Nazis strike again. But he couldn’t budge it even with his big V8. He busted the padlock the padlock on the trailer and found who knows how many thousands of dollars in hurricane panels. And not those flimsy aluminum ones either, these suckers are steel. Mercy me, I can just imagine that a couple of homeowners somewhere are regretting the lose of those right about now. Probably popped into a bunch of garages or storage rooms and found these. They must have been recent and hot for them not to have made it to the scrap yard yet.

For most of the day Scott and James have been digging post holes to sink some thick metal posts in the ground. Tomorrow they are going to attach cross beams to the posts and then attach the panels to the cross beams. The pre-drilled holes in the hurricane panels will make this fairly easy. Not all of the panels are the same length and width but Scott’s going to try and keep it decent looking. They will also leave the wooden privacy fence around the perimeter to camouflage it somewhat.

It’s going to be great to have Scott home for another day. I know I sound wimpy, always moaning about Scott leaving us. I do understand … really. We have bills to pay. I do have a backbone and saints preserve the fool that messes with my family. Its just when Scott is away I feel like a chunk of myself is missing. I’m concerned about the potential situations and dangers he could find himself in. And though he has never directly given me reason, I no longer trust Carlo. I just can’t get beyond some of his past and I’m worried that if things become critical he’ll turn on Scott.

I don’t know if I’ll ever be at peace with Scott leaving the house while this whole NRS situation is ongoing.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2008 3:37 am 
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Great story Kathy! I am really digging the perspective. It's a nice change of pace. Thanks for the great story.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2008 5:03 am 
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I'm loving this. Keep it up!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 12:24 am 
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.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:01 am 
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Dangit, I hate it when I reach the end of a good story thread and find that the story isn't finished yet!

Good job, Kathy, I'm loving it!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:40 am 
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I can't wait for more! I should be in bed but I had to stay up and read this.

I'm a little confused; I thought Carlo was the oldest son? What's going on with his past? I'm sure I missed where you explained it clearly, but it's late and I apologize.

Keep up the good work!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:24 am 
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Great story.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:41 am 
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DryGrain wrote:
I can't wait for more! I should be in bed but I had to stay up and read this.

I'm a little confused; I thought Carlo was the oldest son? What's going on with his past? I'm sure I missed where you explained it clearly, but it's late and I apologize.

Keep up the good work!


Character clarification:

Sissy = mom/wife
Scott = dad/husband
Rose = oldest daughter, senior in highschool so roughly 17 years of age
James = oldest son, sophomore in highschool so roughly 15 or 16 years of age
Sarah = middle child, daughter, middle schooler
Bekah = youngest daughter, elementary aged
Johnnie = older toddler, male, slightly hyper as "all-boy" kids tent to be at that age :D

Supporting characters thus far introduced:

Carlo = guy that works for Scott more often than not in a independent contractor/menial labor capacity

"Sugar Daddy" = unnamed character that was a former tenant that has been sent to jail

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:43 am 
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Kathy in FL wrote:
DryGrain wrote:
I can't wait for more! I should be in bed but I had to stay up and read this.

I'm a little confused; I thought Carlo was the oldest son? What's going on with his past? I'm sure I missed where you explained it clearly, but it's late and I apologize.

Keep up the good work!


Character clarification:

Sissy = mom/wife
Scott = dad/husband
Rose = oldest daughter, senior in highschool so roughly 17 years of age
James = oldest son, sophomore in highschool so roughly 15 or 16 years of age
Sarah = middle child, daughter, middle schooler
Bekah = youngest daughter, elementary aged
Johnnie = older toddler, male, slightly hyper as "all-boy" kids tent to be at that age :D

Supporting characters thus far introduced:

Carlo = guy that works for Scott more often than not in a independent contractor/menial labor capacity

"Sugar Daddy" = unnamed character that was a former tenant that has been sent to jail


Glad everyone is enjoying the story so far. I hope to have another two entries for today but that will depend on whether I can get my meetings out of the way within reasonable time.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 9:58 am 
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Good story you've got going... The panels wil come in handy, I'm sure.

I like the slow decline you have going.

Reading your stories always makes me rethink my preps... I just got done going over the "list" again and found a couple more gaps. Damn you.

:lol:

Keep it up.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 5:40 am 
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Meetings ran long yesterday so I didn't get to post and I'll be out today as well. Tomorrow I promise to have two or three "days" posted.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2008 10:19 am 
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Day Ten

I’m grateful beyond measure that Scott was not out working today. College Hill came unglued. Once that area began to riot, its like everyone else had permission to start to unravel. The gangs out in Town n’ Country, the University Area, and Ybor City started several fires. Clairmel was pretty bad too. The area around the Port of Tampa was like a war zone. Ruskin, Riverview, and Plant City had some serious problems as well. I even heard gunfire from our own lanai.

Scott wore one of the guns in a makeshift holster the entire time he and James were working on the fence. The fence actually looks pretty good but its kinda bright, especially when the sun hits it. And they got hot in the middle of the day. I'm not sure what that means for the garden containers I normally line up agains the fence.

Because of the different sizes of the panels, they were able to leave key holes about every six or seven feet at different heights. Scott drilled matching holes in the wooden fence so that we could see out without having to look over the fence. I was worried about how obvious they would look to the neighbors but the confederate jasmine vines growing on the outside of the fence pretty well hide them unless you are intentionally looking for them. On the inside of the metal fence we covered the holes with a little flap of wood so that even if someone does find the holes in the exterior wooden fence they can’t see through into our yard. And James came up with the idea of using Liquid Nails to glue old carpet strips that we were going to take to the scrap yard around the inside of the wooden fence. If someone tries to hold onto the top of the wooden fence to try and jump up and see into our yard they are going to get a nasty surprise.

Scott didn’t allow the younger three outside at all today. This caused Rose and I quite a bit of work to keep them occupied. Sarah was also a help but she is used to going outside for her “nature projects” and also felt confined and cranky. Part of how we kept them occupied was to let them help with the day’s food preparation.

I let each of them take a turn squishing the starter, reminding them it would only be a couple of more days before we could bake the bread. Everyone is looking forward to that.

Breakfast: We made Apricot Scones for breakfast. The original recipe called for heavy cream but since that was out the question we substituted with milk & butter mixed together (3/4 cup of milk – in this case made from powdered – and 1/3 cup of melted, cooled butter). The scones came out just as rich as if real heavy cream had been used.

Lunch: The last of the shredded cheese really went fast. There was a lot of mold in a corner of the bag so I had to finish it off. Bacon-Tomato Bake is another easy Bisquick recipe that the family enjoys. Its kind of like an open-faced sandwich. The original recipe called for sliced tomatoes and bacon to be cooked and crumbled up. Problem is there are no fresh tomatoes and the last of the fresh bacon was cooked several days ago. Substitutes were easy though. For the fresh sliced tomato we substituted a well-drained can of petite diced tomatoes. For the bacon, real bacon bits were substituted. Rehydrated diced dried onions substitute for the fresh sliced onion rings. The rest was easy and the result were good and filling and relatively easy to clean up since I used non-stick spray to coat the baking pan.

Dinner: After all the bread-like things that we baked today it seemed a shame to use up the second loaf of Silly Dilly Bread but I thought it better to just use it up rather than taking the chance that it will go to waste. To go with the Silly Dilly Bread we made Creamy Rice and Ham. A small can of English peas, instant rice, and a small canned ham that is diced plus a few other ingredients is all it took.

I guess by the end of the day a lot of the rioters had run out of steam. There were still spots of violence here and there but the worst of it seems to have died down. What was scary was how the areas of violence seemed to get cut off from the outside. Police and National Guard troops would just put up blockades and let them go at each other, kind of like cauterizing the rioters' ability to spread into any more areas. The military also got pulled into things when there was a situation over near MacDill USAF Base. The fires were allowed to burn, but they weren't allowed to spread out of the rioting areas. What people are going to make of this in the coming days is anyone's guess. It made a wasteland of the areas of violence but minimized it for everyone else.

Another odd thing that I've been hearing is that people that were shot and/or injured were tossed into trucks and hauled away but where they were taken is not being released. It certainly wasn’t to local hospitals or trauma units. The local media are reporting that hospitals were preparing to be inundated but no wounded ever arrived except for a few first responders and National Guard troops.

There was some chatter on the forums and blogs that large quarantine areas have been created where anyone “behaving abnormally” can be held until they have been determined to be infection free. If true, that means the rule of habeas corpus has been suspended and that’s more frightening than blowing the NYC exists was.

What on earth is going on?

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2008 11:15 am 
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2008 11:21 am 
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Day Eleven

I’ve found one of the best ways to combat fear and depression is to count my blessings and what I have to be thankful for. I am thankful to have had Scott home for as long as we did. I’m thankful that he decided to take one of the guns with him when he left to check on the properties this morning. I’m thankful that he took the time to call this afternoon to check on us and let me know that he was OK up to that point.

I’m praying that he is OK. I’m sure he just wasn’t able to make it home before curfew. I’m sure that has to be it. Please God let that be all it is.

The phones are out and the cable is out. I’ve go the rabbit ears and converter hooked up to the portable TV but the only thing I’m getting is the emergency broadcast transmission and if I hear “beep … beep … beep” one more time I’m going to scream!

I wish I had sent Scott off with a better breakfast. At least he has the Clif Bars and water I stashed in his van. The lunch I sent kinda sucked as well but he was supposed to be home early. I’ll never make that mistake again. Never. The man will never leave this house without a fully packed bug out bag of food again. He better come home so that I can make sure he knows that.

Breakfast: I fixed Cherry Chocolate Chip Scones. Scones and biscuits are turning into the easiest breakfast meals. They go just far enough to get the day started and everyone is good and hungry by lunch so there are no picky eaters or leftovers to worry about. I just wish Scott had had more to eat. The fresh eggs will be all used up soon, but I stocked up on dried eggs, dried egg whites, and some other egg substitution ingredients to piece out the dried eggs. For instance, I learned you can grind flaxseed, or buy commercially ground flaxseed, and make an egg substitute for baking purposes.

Lunch: For lunch I fixed BBQ Pork Sandwiches. The original recipe called for a tub of commercially prepared BBQ pork, but I substituted a couple of cans of BBQ pork instead and it worked just fine. The other ingredients were pretty standard and I just made Bisquick biscuits to use for the bread portion. Giving everyone a serving of fruit cocktail and a pudding cup to eat rounded out the meal. This kept everyone filled until dinnertime arrived. There are stories on the television and radio that some communities are already suffering from utility shortages and that there are a lot of bare pantries. The emergency powers have already instituted rationing programs pretty much everywhere, including here in Tampa. That is what caused some of the rioting yesterday.

I made another cake mix bread recipe is Cake Mix Yeast Rolls. This made more than the Silly Dilly Bread recipe plus these are rolls rather than loaf bread. But the recipe used more flour in addition to a cake mix, but no specialty ingredients except yeast. The trade off was good and by saving the rolls after dinner there will be enough rolls for tomorrow. Plus, starting tomorrow, there will be the Amish Bread starter to use. I nearly forgot to squish it up because I was so out of sorts.

Dinner: I waited dinner as long as I could after it got dark but gave up and fed the kids who were starving. The main dish was Black Beans and Ham served over yellow rice. It goes just as well over white rice, but yellow rice has more seasoning and is what the family enjoys. The only other addition to the meal is the Cake Mix Yeast Rolls. For dessert I made a simple no-bake cheesecake mix topped with blueberry filling. We saved some of everything for Scott.

Tomorrow is the last day for the Amish Bread starter to make. There are going to be roughly four cups of the starter. They’ll last a couple of days and I figure I’ll give it a couple of days before I start another round of starter. Technically, I should be able to start a new batch from scratch each time but I hope to have a couple of tablespoons of starter left over from the first batch and I’ll just add it to the first ingredients of the next batch. This way if the powdered milk isn’t quite rich enough to get the starter going on its own, there will be some starter in there already to get the action going.

I sent the kids to bed early. Even Rose, as old as she is, went meekly with no questions. I think the kids are just too scared to ask where Scott is, but I can tell they were uneasy. I tried to act normally but I spied the kids whispering to one another. Rose and Sarah have baseball bats hidden beside by their mattresses. I didn’t stop them, I just didn’t have the heart. James was only faking going to bed. I went in an hour later to find everyone asleep but him. He was sitting up with the rifle. I just told him to go ahead and come in here with me. My brave boy lasted as long as he could and is now dozing on the sofa after asking me to wake him to take “his turn on watch.” I think of all the kids, James has felt the changes these time have brought the most.

I can’t sleep. The phones still don’t work even though the electricity is still on. Its three o’clock in the morning. I don’t know where Scott is. I don’t know how my parents are doing. I don’t know if my brother made it home before all hell broke loose.

Maybe Scott will be back after first light.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2008 1:07 pm 
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COOL!

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What an incredibly shite place to stop. I am so in on this story. GREAT work Kathy. My wife is really digging this as well. She usually can't get into the Zombie fiction so this is cool for her too.

Again, keep up the great work.

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Noo!! Don't stop there! :cry:

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Kathy, I think you are missing the priorities here.

Work isn't important! Sleep isn't important! (Hmm, I mean yours, of course :D )

What is mandatory is filling our need for a story fix!

I hope you understand, and will henceforth devote yourself to making certain that we don't have to crave a fix anymore.

Thank you for your time!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 12:26 pm 
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Day Twelve

That scummy, no account bastard. That worthless walking sack of skin. Where ever Carlo is now, I hope he is rotting from his little boy parts outward in a very slow and painful way!

The phones came back on around 6 AM. We know why everything was turned off but I’ll have to explain it later when I understand it better; basically Homeland Security kicked in because some predetermined breaker points were reached. The TV signal came back at nearly the same moment as the phones. Less than 30 seconds later the phone was ringing and it was Scott!!!!!!

He’s OK. Beat up, but OK. It took him until the afternoon to get home and he was in pretty rough shape by that time. Carlo better never show his traitorous face around here or God help him when I’m done with him. James feels the same way and to blow off steam we’ve devised a few nasty bits of revenge should the scum have the temerity to come near us.

After hearing Scott’s voice all of my fear and fatigue vanished. I woke the kids up thinking that he was on his way home at that moment. I flew into action and added the last day’s ingredients to the Amish bread starter and used one of the resulting four cups of starter to make muffins.

Breakfast: For the muffins I used powdered eggs instead of fresh and raisins instead of nuts. I also added a little vanilla powder to the pitcher of milk to make it richer tasting and put it in the freezer to get ice cold.

After I put the muffins in the oven I finally got an open line and reached my parents. They’re OK and didn’t experience the communication blackout like we did. They were the ones that told me about the terrorist attack at the Atlanta airport and about the mobs that tried to overrun DC. They told me about the cruise ship that had been spotted adrift off of Miami that had been discovered to have hundreds of NRS-infected people aboard. They also told me of the institution of the Emergency Powers Act and of the Health Care Worker Draft; also, how cities housing sensitive military and civilian strategic points were being occupied by the military and how Tampa was on this list because of MacDill AFB and the Port of Tampa. Things got complicated quickly yesterday. The Feds apparently didn’t feel like that had any other choice. But whatever problems these new protocols solve, they are sure to create others to have to deal with.

Just as I got off of the phone with my Dad and the muffins came out of the oven, Scott called again. He had been asked to stay and help fortify what they are calling the Keel Outpost. Its actually the Jimmie B. Keel Library on Bearss Avenue. I guess I better back up and explain or nothing is going to make sense.

Scott said Carlo had arranged an ambush for him. It looked like they planned on taking the van and everything in it and probably holding Scott for ransom. Carlo knew I’d pay whatever they asked to get Scott back safely. Need I say that Carlo learned that trick in his childhood home of Colombia?

Things obviously didn’t work out as planned however. First it took longer than expected for Scott and Carlo to reach the ambush point. Scott kept changing the day's work schedule without consulting Carlo which turned out to be a good thing. This may have caused some of Carlo’s buddies to not show up or to get cold feet. Either way, there were only two or three people in addition to Carlo trying to pull this off. Second, Scott didn’t tell Carlo he had brought a gun with him. My distrust of Carlo had begun to rub off on him. Third, and worst for Carlo’s plan, was that they underestimated Scott.

As they neared the intersection where they started to jump Scott, Carlo suddenly attacked using a mallet he had used to lay some pavers at the previous stop. Because of how tight everything is in the cab of the van Carlo only hit a few glancing blows with the mallet before switching to his fists. He did manage to knock Scott’s glasses off and break them. Not knowing what was going down, but knowing Carlo was aiming at his head, and in fear for his life, Scott grabbed the gun from the door pocket and aimed and fired in Carlo’s general direction. Scott is very near-sighted and losing his glasses was very bad.

All this time Carlo’s buddies had been beating on the van trying to get in. Thankfully Carlo was apparently too occupied to remember to open the door locks. They did spider a rear door window but the grill kept them from coming in through the back.

As soon as Scott pulled the trigger he floored the gas and started heading away from the intersection. He thinks he may have run over one of the guys but couldn’t see for sure.

Scott still had Carlo covered with the gun and was driving erratically with one hand. About two blocks later, after Scott took out a couple of mailboxes along the way, Carlo opened the passenger door and fell out. Scott swung so suddenly that the door slammed back shut on its own. At that point Scott put both hands back on the stirring wheel and got out of there as quickly as he could.

The problem was it was already late in the day and a lack of glasses result in Scott missing some turns and he wound up farther away from home rather than closer. By the time he got turned back in the right direction it was dark. His erratic driving caught the attention of some National Guard troops and he was pulled over by a police car travelling with them. Luckily one of the cops recognized Scott from the Neighborhood Watch program and that, combined with Scott’s ID and story, got him out of trouble.

But being it was full dark they “invited” Scott to come with them to a command outpost which turned out to be in the library. It is a good location because it is a newer building and already has a room set up from computers and wi-fi, not to mention it has a satellite feed.

The medic stationed at the outpost patched Scott up and gave him a tetanus shot just to be one the safe side. He has a black eye, a busted lip, and some pretty bad bruising on his right thigh, chest, and stomach. I didn’t know how bad though until he got home and I checked him over myself. After he was patched up he was able to find his spare glasses that he keeps in one of his tool boxes.

Scott is a rather private person but he can make friends quickly in the right circumstances. I guess he scored some points by not complaining and remaining calm despite the situation. He scored more when he volunteered to help set the outpost up, even providing some basic supplies without asking for compensation.

As soon as the outpost got word that communication was going to be restored, they cleared a line for Scott to call home. They also asked him if he would stay and help finish harden the outpost position. They couldn’t pay him, but they did trade him several cases of MREs for the work and some additional supplies he carried around as general inventory. Technically they probably could have just commandeered it. This way the mutual aid benefitted everyone and there were no hard feelings.

They also let Scott “check out” a bunch of books and movies for us and the kids. About ten banana crates full to be more precise. The troops were going to just shove everything outside that got in their way. He brought home cookbooks, gardening books, all sorts of DVDs like from the History Channel and kids shows. He dumped all of the "new releases" into the crates as well when he recognized a couple of books that I had been wanting when we had the extra money. He even managed to find a couple of manuals on gun care and hunting in Florida; and pulled every "survival" book they had on the shelves. The crates are sitting in the dining room where the kids have started to go through them.

Back when I knew that Scott wasn’t likely to be home for lunch, but might make it home right afterwards, I decided to make something a little different to celebrate. I was also anxiously waiting to hear the whole story of what had gone down and needed something to occupy myself with.

Lunch: Many of my fresh potatoes are starting to sprout some eyes. I bought several bags of potatoes when they were on sale last month but now I know why they were on sale. They weren’t the freshest. I cleaned enough to feed the family and baked them. I could have just made more sour cream from evaporated milk, used some of the butter or margarine that still remained in the freezer, but I wanted something a little more substantial and special so I made Crab-Stuffed Bake Potatoes. The recipe called for whipping cream but I just substituted milk and some extra butter added in. For the fresh green onions I substituted a few dried chopped chives. And instead of grated cheddar cheese I substituted some of the grated processed cheese I opened yesterday. OK, so maybe it wasn’t exactly like in the restaurants, but no one complained about the difference in canned crab and fresh crabmeat. I also saved one for Scott and a good thing too.

When my man finally drove up and came inside I didn’t know whether to jump for joy or cry. I’ve neve seen him injured like this, it just hurts my heart to see it. The girls and Johnnie were crying really hard. James was shaking like a leaf in what I thought was shock. I quickly realized however that it was rage. Scott and James butt heads often … testosterone and teenage hormones mostly … but right then I knew that no matter what, they were still very close. God help Carlo or any one else that tries to hurt his dad. I have one very angry teenage boy to deal with now.

We all spent the rest of the day fawning over Scott. He was starving and ate what we had saved him from lunch and the leftovers from dinner last night too. After that he explained what had happened in more detail though he glossed over shooting Carlo until the younger kids had left the room. Rose was horrified but James seemed more secure knowing his dad would do what he had to do to survive and return to us.

In many ways Rose is an idealist. She wants to believe the best of people and I’m very afraid that while she is of practical help around the house and with her younger siblings she has a ways to go yet before I can trust her to be strong enough in any physical altercations we may experience. That worries me but there isn’t anything I can do about it right now. Unfortunately, time is likely to take care of her idealism before I can bring her around more gently.

Dinner: Scott wasn’t very hungry after eating all of the leftovers so I just made a Bisquick Chicken Pot Pie casserole for dinner. Canned chicken and canned mixed veggies were easy substitutes for the fresher ingredients called for in the original recipe. And it only called for one egg so I tried out the flaxseed egg substitute and it worked like a charm. Since there were still some Cake Mix Yeast Rolls for anyone who wanted rolls, there was no need to use any more of the three remaining cups of Amish Bread starter. The starter did get covered up and placed in the refrigerator so that the fermentation process slowed down. To use up the remaining powdered milk in the refrigerator I made Anise Milk as a before bedtime treat to go along with the remainder of the cheesecake that had been leftover from last night. The warm milk helped to calm everyone down for the evening.

I’m all used up and need to get some rest. Scott is already asleep due to the Vicodin I gave him. I had a couple left over from my last bit of dental work. The kids, except for James, are also asleep. He and I stayed up talking about some additional security ideas he has. He wants to camouflage the vehicles when they aren’t being used and he also wants to try and hide our two barrels of auto fuel. The biggest project though is he want to enclose the carport somehow. I’m not sure how we are going to do all of this but I told him to wait a day or two and then talk to Scott about it. James doesn’t like how the neighbors seem to be watching us and I can’t say I blame him, but I don’t want to over react either and cost us time and money we are already short on.

For certain it’s going to be a couple of days before Scott can do any kind or work or go out again. He is pretty banged up. We have a long list of chores to do already and we need to see what the military occupation of Tampa is going to mean to us personally. Without a doubt there are strange and strained days ahead and we are going to need all of our wits about us to make it through them.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 1:48 pm 
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Starring Martha Stewart as Sissy.

Great story! Keep up the good work.

-Papacat.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 2:56 pm 
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Papacat wrote:
Starring Martha Stewart as Sissy.

Great story! Keep up the good work.

-Papacat.


Hmmmmm. While I can see Martha Stewart kicking some zombie butt I never pictured Sissy in quite that light. :lol: Sissy is a little more ordinary and a little less ... a little less ... well, bitchy. :wink:

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 3:18 pm 
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Great story Kathy, I'm definately subscribing to this one.

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