Roadcat's Apocalypse KITH Diaries Day 5 (continued)
by, 03-03-12 at 12:35 PM (1187 Views)
December 23, 2012 11:40am
The A14 is a stretch of over-congested, under-maintained road that is a main transport artery for the region. Before all this started I used to watch the sides of the road whenever I drove down it as quite often one could spot broken coil springs lying in the grass next to the road. It took us most of the morning walking northwards to reach the A14, skirting several small villages on our way and giving any houses a wide berth. It wasn't completely uneventful because we found several useful objects besides the roads and pathways as we went.
A couple of bottles, which will give us a means to carry drinking water.
The A14 is ghostly, normally carrying 1000's of cars an hour it now stands mostly deserted except for a few stationary vehicles, some of which have obviously been involved in pile-ups.
I can't see any signs of life from here, but I'm going to go down and see what useful things I can find, I'll write up about it when I get back to somewhere I feel is safe again.
December 23, 2012 4:40pm
It's taken all afternoon but I finally feel I've shaken those things. They're freaky, they just sit there doing nothing until they see you and then quick as anything they're after you. And they can move! Seems that they've kept some sort of basic muscle control and maybe rudimentary intelligence of some sort. They can walk and run but they don't seem to feel pain and they won't dodge things, but I'm rambling, let me go back to the beginning.
I approached the A14 carefully, getting as close as I could by moving through a small copse of trees. There didn't seem to be any sign of life, although there were some bodies lying in the road and sitting in cars. Crows had landed on the ones in the road and were eating them, but flapped noisily away when I approached. The bodies were starting to rot and the stench was overpowering. I think if I had eaten more than the acorns in the last few days I probably would have vomited right there. Anyway I was there to see what metal I could find, so I started picking things up off the road. With so many damaged cars around there was no shortage of steel and I started stuffing small pieces into my pockets. Suddenly Gizmo started barking and I turned around to see 2 zombies running towards me! The one had obviously been in an accident or a fight and it's left arm dangled awkwardly, there was nothing wrong with the speed either of them was moving, however!
In my panic I dropped half of the things I had picked up and ran off the road into the farmers' field, calling the dogs as I ran. The field we were in was sloped, so that I was running up hill and by the time I reached the trees on the far side of it, I was gasping for breath and my legs felt like lead. To make matters worse the undamaged zombie was gaining on me rapidly and was now only a few meters behind me! I plunged into the copse, ducking branches, jumping brambles and logs and burst onto the field on it's far side. Glancing over my shoulder I saw the creature had virtually came to a stand-still. It made no attempt to duck under any branches and just ran into them and flailed and shoved it's way through brambles, falling over logs, ignoring the damage that it was doing to itself. Even the dumbest of animals knows enough to duck under branches, and tries to avoid hurting itself.
I jumped a small ditch and sprinted across the next field to the next stand of trees, by the time I had reached their shelter the zombie was less than half way across the field and on loosing site of me amongst the trees it just stopped and stood still in the middle of the field. The dogs and I watched it from the trees for about an hour and it didn't move in all that time, so we headed off in the opposite direction to where we have stopped for the evening, another fortunate find on our way here was a large plastic bag found in a ditch.
This'll provide some extra warmth tonight.
Once we had found a safe place to stay tonight I took a look through my pockets at the haul I had grabbed at the A14:
My scavanging has provided me with:
2 metal pipes (one short, one longer), a broken fan belt, some rubber tread from a tyre, a large galvanized nut, 3 small rectangles of metal with broken rivets in them (I suspect they were some sort of bracket), a short length of automobile wire, several meters of very manky nylon rope, a small triangle of steel, a large cast iron pipe cap, a number plate and a child's shoe that looks like it has been partially eaten (fortunately without a foot in it).
I quickly got a fire going. Well I say quickly, but it took over an hour of persistance. The only 2 bits of metal that produce any sort of spark when hit with a flint are the very short pipe and the small triangular bit of steel. I cleaned the rust off the pipe by rubbing it on a piece of rough stone I found and prepared some kindling.
My firelighting kit
After much banging of rock and steel I finally had a small glowing ember, more by luck than talent, which I transferred to my stick pile.
Where there's smoke there's fire.
Finally a flame!
Once the fire was alight, and with the sun setting I went down to the stream and washed all the grease and grime out of the pipe cap, scrubbing it with handfuls of sand, and then collected stinging nettles (getting stung numerous times) and put them on to boil.
Just like Super Noodles, only green.
While they were cooking I tried my hand at flint knapping and eventually ended up with 2 pieces of flint with reasonably sharp edges that I used to hack a point on a branch, making a spear.
Finally dinner was ready, it tasted a bit like boiled cabbage and had a small oil slick floating on top of it from grime that I didn't manage to get off, but was very filling. Glad it tastes good because I suspect I'm going to be eating a lot of it in the near future.
Dinner is on the table!
There is game about, we've seen rabbits in the morning and again this evening and twice today the dogs have flushed pheasants out the trees but I have no way of catching them - I'm hoping the spear will give me a chance to change that as well as making me feel much more secure.
I'm very satisfied with what I've achieved today, but now it's time to get some sleep, knowing that the birds will wake me at 4 in the morning.