In which we realize that the more things change; the more they remain the same.
|Day 12 I think it is April 8th.
I find it amazing that it doesn’t bother me that I do not know the exact date other than Day 12. Doesn’t seem as important anymore. I think daylight savings time was soon…so I am wondering if it is already 7 am…this I find disconcerting. I want to know what time it is, but I don’t really care about the date. Have to find a calendar today.
I also think that I need to carry this with me, or find a hiding spot for it. I could not find it for three days and then all of a sudden, there it is sitting with my stuff this morning. I find this very strange, especially since no one said they’d seen it or really seemed to care except for Lilac and Duncan.
This makes me wonder if what I write is becoming an issue. Are my opinions suddenly a problem? I’m thinking back to my last entry and I wasn’t particularly thrilled with the way things are going here, but it was an honest accounting of things. One more worry.
We didn’t get much sleep last night. Steve’s leg is not doing well and he was in a lot of pain. Doc gave him some pain medication, but then I heard him talking to John about wasting meds and it makes me wonder. Steve kept talking all night long and most of it didn’t make any sense. I think we heard most of his presentation tho. Wonder if he would have gotten the job?
News of the past several days.
Outsiders seem to be settling in, kids are happy and Donna is talking about starting a school.
Bobby, Brittany and John were Outside doing some chores (Actually, Brittany and Bobby were emptying slop buckets etc and John was ‘overseeing.’) and they think they saw Tony. So I guess that means he’s still alive, but why isn’t he in town or something.
Doc, Cyndy and Matt went down to the high school and found a real Geiger counter. The radiation amounts around here, both in and Out are negligible. There is talk about the entire castle being safe, but for the moment we are all still in the lower levels.
Outside news via the radio.
Virginia—the remnants of the federal government have issued several new regulations…laws? New triage statements, concerning who is and isn’t eligible.
NYC, Boston, Detroit and Chicago etc are all off limits. Permanently. Accorded the same sanctity of cemeteries.
Canada—They are asking for an accounting from the US, and demanding retribution for their losses. Right. How and with what? And why the US? We didn’t start this.
Colorado—The state of Colorado has closed its borders as have Idaho, Wyoming, North and South Dakota and Montana. We heard from several radio operators who mentioned the possibility of these states joining to form a new country. We also heard that these states are refusing entry to anyone without a state ID proving they have reason to be there. Tourism isn’t an issue any more.
Buffalo—There is talk about Buffalo and nearby Canadian cities joining forces to harness Niagara Falls energy again to restore electricity, on a limited basis to certain factions of a combined coop.
York, PA—I think we heard the last transmission of a man dying from radiation poisoning. His entire family had died, but he was too sick to bury them, or even get them outside. He put them all in his bedroom so they would be together. His wife and their 4 children, including a baby born 3 days before the End. He couldn’t eat, couldn’t keep anything in his stomach, not even water. His skin was peeling. He bled easily and copiously. His last words were, “We are all dead and dying. There is no more United States. All that we have been is no more. All that we are dying for, all that died for her have died in vain…” and then nothing but static.
Duncan here. I asked Sammy if I could jot down some thoughts. I am a bit concerned. Censorship seems to raising its ugly head. I know that while they (being John and Doc) seem to regard Sammy’s journal as a waste of time, they are concerned with what she is writing. I need to define for myself if this is important enough to me to speak out. (Although I feel as if I might be, simply by writing these thoughts down and thereby, making them concrete.) As through history, due apparently to be repeated yet once again, there is always a division amongst the ranks. There has been and will always be a caste system, ranks in society where some are the royalty, the czars, the haves and others are simply the have-nots, the lesser ranks, the lowest of the low. As an apparent member falling somewhere in the middle, I find this distasteful in the extreme far more so than I ever did in the past. I was content with my lot in life, never stressing nor striving for or to be one of the people in ‘charge’ so to speak. So why now, am I finding it to be an issue? Did I think it would/could be different? I wasn’t aware I had even been thinking about it, but it seems I have now. I do not know what, if anything, I can or should do about it.
I worry about Sammy. I do not think that she realizes what position she is beginning to put herself in. I do not know if she reads backwards in her journal. I have read nothing of what she has written. She is strong, independent, and I think she would do well on the TV show Survivor she talks about. We are fortunate to be above jet streams such that we are north of all the radiation streaming across the US. This gives us a much higher survival probability. This is assuming, of course, that we survive the initial survival.
Duncan wrote in my journal earlier. I haven’t read it yet. I am not sure I should, but I will later. Right now I have to tell about this evening. We had a mandatory church service, reigned over by “Father” Matt. Initially, I found the idea comforting and was looking forward to it, even tho I was not happy about being told I had to attend. Still, I wanted to go anyway so I didn’t worry about it.
We had the service in the living room. They had set up an alter using the dining room table, one of Martha’s lace table cloths (she was worried they’d get candle wax dripped on it) and her grandmother’s candle sticks with new candles. They’d moved the couch in front of the ‘altar’ and put other chairs behind it. I sat on the floor in the back, there not being enough. Bobby and Duncan carried Steve upstairs, but he was so out of it, I doubt anything registered to him. John, Doc, Lanie and Cyndy squeezed on the couch…Lilac, Donna, Martha, Brittany, and the kids sat in the chairs. There was room for more and there were chairs in the kitchen, but I didn’t feel comfortable dragging them in for some reason.
Matt opened the service with a prayer thanking God for our deliverance and then it pretty much followed a typical service. I found myself relaxing and gaining some small comfort from the traditional prayers/responses that weren’t too far off what I am used to given the smatterings of difference due to a combination of Protestant/Catholic faiths represented. Then there was the sermon. And that is when I started to listen to the ideas under the words. I caught Duncan’s eye and he nodded slightly. He was getting it too. So, it wasn’t just me. Everyone else seemed to sit spellbound. My skin started to crawl.
It seemed as if Matt was setting everything up for God to have said that things were to be a certain way, which we shouldn’t question anything John, Matt, Cyndy, Doc or Lanie said, that God was guiding them and that who are we to question the will of God. He thanked God for giving us good leaders, asking him to strengthen them. He didn’t mention the rest of us. Or ever during the service.
All is quiet now. Not earlier. Lilac, Duncan, Brittany, Steve, Bobby and I are sleeping in the basement. Everyone else has moved upstairs, into the bedrooms.
Day 13. It is, officially, April 8th, 2005. Daylight savings started almost a week ago. Doesn’t matter tho…we are on regular normal(!) old time still.
I read what Duncan wrote. I told him he could feel free to read anything I’d written in here. I hope he does. I am worried too. My ex-father-in-law used to have a house nearby, further up the road towards Bromley. It used to have a lot of food stored in the basement. Other things too. I am thinking and wondering if it is still there. It isn’t too far away either.
Steve is very sick. Doc says he doesn’t have any more penicillin or pain pills. He gave us some aspirin. There are streaks running up Steve’s leg and the wound is infected and full of green pus. His ankle is very swollen, almost looks like it could split open, and it is that swollen. I tried to clean it out last night when Steve was crying and moaning. He isn’t making any sense and he has a temp. He also isn’t eating.
Doc and John turned more people away today. We now are maintaining an armed guard (all of us in turn) around the fence line. John had several guns. I stood watch from 9am this morning until a few minutes ago. I was carrying a 30-30 but it didn’t have any ammo in it. John said the idea of the gun was more important. I could not have shot anyone anyway.
I talked to Duncan a lot today. He seems to care about me and what I think and feel. I do too, about him I mean. He seems very worried but he wouldn’t really say about what. I saw him talking to Lilac a lot too. She is such a dear lady, taking so much in stride and pretty much always in a positive mood, no matter what. I envy her a bit. Her composure. I get so upset and can’t hide it well. I am not able to hide my thoughts and feelings behind a mask. I am right there; out in the open for anyone to see, should they care to look. She is calm and maybe accepting is the right word. Steve seems worse.
World News Tonight.
Paris, France. The French are blaming the US for the continued difficulties. We deserved what we got and it was a shame it had to flow over and mess everyone else up.
London. I think Duncan was pleased to hear that the folks there seem to be surviving well. The Queen and some of her family are at Windsor Palace. Prince Charles and Camilla still got married, quietly, in Scotland and the princes are in an undisclosed location. (I hope that doesn’t mean they don’t know where/how they are.) The man said that London had made it through the bombing in WWII and they would survive this. Hardy, determined lot, the British.
Lima, Peru. Largely unaffected by the rest of the world’s problems. No tourist visas will be issued to Americans. Canadians and Mexicans are welcome.
Somewhere in Iraq. Reports of increased violence almost lost in the joy over destruction of the US.
Virginia, US Condoleeza Rice saying that we should take heart, that the US is alive, if not well, but merely in a state of rebuilding. That we would one day rise again and then surpass where we’d been in the past. Etc, etc, yadda yadda yadda.
We basementites cooked our own food tonight. We had okra, beans and peanut butter. Nourishing I suppose, but I don’t like okra and I hate peanut butter…always have, even as a kid…when everyone else had pb &j’s, I had creamed cheese and jelly. Gosh that would taste good right now. Or a grilled cheese. Heck, a steak. I need to stop this. I’m hungry. I’m cranky. I need a hug. I want to go home.