I had a couple things written down to maybe write about today, and then I read Maebeme's post over at My life, my world. She wrote about an adventure she had this week and it looked so lovely and so full of history. It really got my mind going.
I started thinking about my ancestors (and yours) and how we have all become so 'soft'! It is true. Sure, we have all had challenges in our lives and we have had hardships - but I wonder how many actually come even a smidge close to what our ancestors faced.
Think about it. There were no roads. No fancy vehicles. No stores at first. No lumber yards. No meat markets. No heat or AC. There WAS just raw nature!!!
The first settlers had to face wilderness. They had to cut their own trails through dense woods and over hills, rivers, mountains, etc. They had horses and if lucky, wagons. Many had to make their own tools to work with. As they cut those trails it was with axes - no chainsaws then!
They had to cut trees for lumber to make their homes. They had dirt floors. IF lucky they had a fireplace for heat. No cooling.
They had to cut ice from rivers and lakes for any cooling and try to keep it as long as possible in dugouts.
They had to grow what they ate or forage the woods and meadows. IF they had meat - they killed it themselves (before it could maybe kill them). They learned through trial and error ways to preserve food for harsh winters.
This would have been a fanciful cabin. Porch and rails, flower boxes and real windows!
Clothes were what you had or made. Bedding was made from scraps of worn out clothes. Many used hides and skins for warmth. They hides were often used for footwear as well.
My ancestors came here in the early 1700's and were looking forward to a life without religious persecution. They went through so much - even having one of my many times great grandfathers being captured and held for years by Indians. There are many history stories about this. The things these people endured is beyond my imagination.
We have all seen shows like Little House on The Prairie and think WOW. It had to be so much worse in the years before that was represented. Before towns and any kind of rules. Just wilderness and nature and you surviving by your wits!!!!
Doctors were hard to come by and hospitals did not exist in those early years. No modern medicine. People used nature as remedies. If you got hurt out in the wild - odds are you died.
Even in recent years (1800's and up to mid 1900's) many people lived in such basic ways. Times were hard. Think rural areas and mountain areas and it was even worse. No electricity in many areas, only fireplaces and wood stoves for heat. No way to cool down except maybe a dip in the crick.
Grow what you ate or kill what you ate. No formal schools. Buying new clothes and such just didn't happen much. Just going to a town was a huge adventure.
Newspaper or feed bags lined walls to keep out cold drafts. Shoes were not a necessity. Everything was used over and over! Life was at it simplest and bare essentials was all many had. Some not even that.
I guess my point to this is boy oh boy - are we FORTUNATE!!!!!!
It seems we have all become a bunch of panty wastes!!!! LOL! SO spoiled with little imaginations or skills. We would most likely not survive if the worse happened and we had to revert back to old times. Sure we all like to think we know enough and YES, we do know from reading and TV what people did. But could we do it and survive? Who knows.
Maebeme see what your sweet adventure post did to me? LOL! Boy you got my mind going.
I love watching shows like Barnwood Builders because they talk about the history of old barns and buildings they are trying to preserve. I find it all so fascinating.
So many of these buildings were built before this was even a country and still survive. That is amazing - the workmanship and skills these people had. I can't believe it would happen much today.
So the next time the AC goes out or the furnace for a day or so, stop and think. Next time you run out of something and you jump in your vehicle and run up the street to the fancy store to buy something - think. The next time you are stuck without water for a while - think. The next time something you have breaks or wears out - think.
They next time you dig into a nice steak or seafood dinner - think. Next time you fill glass with ice cubes to keep your drink nice and cold - think, They next time you take a good look at your stocked pantry and freezers - think. Next time you need a doctor or a hospital - think.
I applaud people today learning and trying to live off the grid. What gumption.
Even with living off grid today - supplies and towns and vehicles are there and can be reached and used.
Take a moment today to just think about the past and what your ancestors went through. If not here, then in another country. No matter who you were or where you came from - there were times when THINGS that we know did NOT exist.
Be ever so grateful for the little things and especially for the big things.
Our lives are pure comfort compared to history!!!!!