I know most of the library acquisitions in the bunker have been to get us prepared for the coming conflagration, but as we suffer through the death throes of society, I can’t help but think of the need for some humour. Things will be grim. We need laughs.
Of course we need the collected Austen because:
For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors and laugh at them in our turn?
And in close quarters for long periods of time, we will need all the elegant snark we can get:
I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal.
Barbara Pym is a must, too, though her sadly disappointed characters might also be a tad depressing at times. Dorothy Parker without question: mordant wit may be among our few escapes from the gloom. Gaskell‘s Cranford stories for quieter times, when you want to know the ladies have got your back. And Georgette Heyer for when you’ve just finished re-reading all the Austen and can’t bear another dull conversation about cleaning out the air vents.
Bunker Am Dram cannot survive without a production or two of Aphra Behn’s The Rover.
And I must say a special word for my much adored inspiration, the lovely Winifred Watson. If you’ve not read the novel behind the delightful Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day you are in for a treat.
Who are your favourite fun writers? I admit most of mine are, alas, beyond the veil. Got some more modern recommendations?
Ok, I know what you are going to say, you can’t afford a large, lead lined nuclear bunker under your garden, especially as you live in a first floor flat. Fine and fair, but for many of us there is something we can do in terms of preparing a reinforced space to retreat to.
Starting with the obvious. The Garage.
I foyu are fortunate enough to have a garage you may well be like me. My garage is full of the debris of a previous relationship, old tool boxes, gardening stuff and a moulding weights bench. The plan for my garage is simple though. Clear it out, put up some racking make it a useable space. Now my garage even has a power point and lights, so worst come to worst and my home turns out to be no where near zombie proof enough (which I suspect to be the case) then I have somewhere I can retreat to with the cats. What I need is to set it up. That means water, a storage heater, a toilet, food and cat food supplies (things with long expiration dates and circulate into your home restocking into the garage, the little camping stove and gas, sleeping bag and the tool boxes and garden implements can stay for defence. I’ll also need to rig up some means of seeing outside without giving my presence away. That requires more thought.
In a push though it doesn’t have to be a nice big comfortable garage. Line your loft with those heat blankets they use for runners to disguise your body heat from searches and create a little last resort bolt hole up there, even the cupboard under the stairs could be used in this way if needs be, remove the outside handle on the way in and stay quiet till trouble passes.
Take a walk around your home and think, what can you do if aliens or zombies attack and you need to convince them there is no one left alive in your home?