Communication is the basic tool we use to express ourselves. With today’s technologies making it so easy to communicate, we are being “dummified.” If the power goes out, we will be brought back to the stone age.
Indians used to send smoke signals and communicate over vast amounts of land. They didn’t need to charge up anything: they just started a fire and sent smoke signals. What we have to know is that every enlightened civilization has fell and in a few minutes, we could easily be robbed of our battery-operated lifeline.
What would you do if you were separated from your family and electronics were out. Say we had a solar flair and your kids were at school. Do your kids know what to do? Every situation is different and the signals you use will differ. Some may see this as farfetched, but I won’t take the risk. I will always be figuring out new ways and teaching my family and friends how to communicate without electronics.
I have Amish neighbors and they use the clothesline to communicate to their drivers. When they need a ride, they may put out a certain towel or colored piece of cloth. This is their way of telling the driver that they need a ride.
A lantern hung outside may mean visitors welcome, but a lantern on the floor may mean do not disturb. There are times you don’t want people knowing your meanings, so putting up a written sign just won’t do. Colored lanterns can also send a signal for hundreds of year brothels: use the red lantern as an invite to come in.
Flashing lights can be used in great distances. Using a mirror is very smart and should be practiced. Many stranded people have been able to signal ships and aircrafts leading to being saved. Using codes like Morse code or your own signals can be a smart and silent way to communicate.
Have you seen the old Tarzan series. I’m not going to tell you to do his animal call, but do you remember the war drums? Noise can carry for miles especially when broadcasted from the top of a roof or mountain. If it takes beating on a drum or beating on a car hood, go ahead and use it. Come up with a code or use Morse code again.
Are you a walking dead fan? One episode was genius and simple. The departed Glen said he would send his wife Maggie a signal when he had to travel away from her. After some days she feared the worst but lifted her head to spot a tangle of balloons rising and she knew he was ok. If that isn’t a form of communication I don’t know what is. I’ll miss Glen!
For centuries, we have used the homing pigeon to communicate vast distances. These knoble birds are simply amazing and your life and mine may have been very different today if it weren’t for homing pigeons delivering messages in the military.
Keeping homing pigeons can be an exciting and enjoying functional hobby. The ability to have a bird deliver a message as far as 100 miles away is mind blowing. Even more unreal is having that bird come back home. This doesn’t automatically just happen; it takes some training and consistency.
The basics are to take your pigeons in a wire cage one mile away first. They should return home for food and water. Next week, take them 5 miles away and release to see if they come home. Then in weekly intervals go 10 then 15 and so on until it’s more than 50 miles away.
I’m planning on building a coup this spring and find a few friends and family that are willing to try this. My parents live 100 miles from me and I definitely want to talk them into this idea for security reasons. If something catastrophic were to happen and I wouldn’t be able to use phone, email or radio, to reach them, we would be in the dark about each other.
Not only are homing pigeons useful: they are tasty. Eat the extras. Just don’t make a mistake and eat the one you trained!
Flair guns are an easy method to send a signal. Rocket flares are bright enough to see at night and in the dark. Reaching a height of about 300 ft, it can be seen for about 25 miles away. Set some sort of pre-arranged agreement that if there were an emergency and other communications were down, you could look for a flare at 7pm. So the one group would look up and hope to see a flare going off at the predetermined time. This signal may mean everything is ok and a flare back means the second party is also ok. Then other more detailed signals may give other messages.
Similar to flare are the mortar type firework. These fireworks are fairly inexpensive and I hope it’s allowed in your state. If not, you have to make the decision if the penalty is worth the gain. I’m sure you will make the right decision!
Try and get a plan together and get your friends and family on board. You may need this skill but I hope we won’t.