This week's episode picks-up with the supply run Rick announced he was going on in the final moments of Episode 11 and would be taking Michonne and young Carl with him. Carl doesn't understand why Rick seems to be trusting Michonne, but Rick explains that he didn't feel comfortable leaving her at the prison with Merle there if he himself wasn't going to be around to keep the peace. Also, he is trying to teach him the wisdom of uniting with those who share a common purpose, even when they're not fully trusted. We are also introduced to the group's unwillingness to further trust any more outsiders through the visage of a loan survivor, decked-out with a lot of camping gear but utterly alone, who tries frantically to flag them down for help only to be left without a second thought.
These people have clearly become the walking dead themselves, turned uncaring by the necessities and harsh truths of a cruel world where every kindness promises a chance at being betrayed in return.
What follows is a teaching point for each of us in the Prepper / Survivalist community to glean with regards to the dangers of complete isolation. Humans are inherently social beings and there isn't much that most of us can't overcome, given time and the support of friends. When we are alone, however, and tragedy strikes, then dealing with hardship and coming through to the other side is all the more difficult a proposition. Survival necessarily brings with it hard times, but such troubles are best surmounted with the support of a group, even if it is a small group. Surviving alone is a much more difficult proposition and is, therefore, not advisable if it can be avoided.
The trick is to either form a group or attach yourself as a member of an existing one that is small enough to be somewhat mobile -- if the need should arise -- and to only include those that can be trusted; but that is also of a sufficient size to be able to provide mutual support and defense, stand guard-duty, etc. In order to both make yourself attractive as a recruit for such groups and to strengthen any group of which you eventually end-up as a member (thereby increasing the chances of yourself and the others surviving for longer), now is the time to build your skill-set. You may fancy yourself a crack shot with a squirrel gun, but hunters (while that is a useful skill) will be a dime a dozen, depending on your region. You need to be using the time we have now to build a deeper skill-set:
If you are former/current military or law enforcement, keep your tactical skills honed; if not, attain those skills through private training at your own expense;
Learn outdoor skills; know how to build a fire and a shelter, if need be, without modern conveniences;
Learn old world skills, such as gardening, canning, making jerky, etc.;
Amass certain gear and study tools that are widely-available now, but will act as force-multipliers for you in any type of collapse scenario, such as hand-crank lighting, weapons and ammunition, First Aid supplies, etc.;
Install a wood-burning stove in your home if you live in a region with harsh Winters, so that you don't freeze in the first year without your electric furnace.
By no means is the above meant to be an all-inclusive list, but, rather, a general guideline to get you thinking in the correct frame-of-mind.
The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray] --- [DVD]
The Walking Dead: The Complete Second Season [Blu-ray] --- [DVD]
My previous reviews for this series can be accessed by clicking the links below: