(For the past three years, I’ve used Reverb10 prompts for every day of December. It’s a great way to reflect on the year and set goals for the future. I’ve kept my favorite prompts, added a few from other sources, and created my own month of questions.)
Skill. What skill did you learn this year? What skill would you like to cultivate – learn or refine – in the next year?
I made fire! A bit of a closeted prepper, I am interested in survival skills. This year it worked out that there was a day-long survival class not far from us. We went with another couple who shares our obsession (and is a bit more prepared for the zombie apocalypse than we are if I am being honest) and we had a ball. We learned how to make shelter the right way, how to make fire, how to gather water and cook food, etc… the highlight of the class was making the fire, however. We had semi-assembled fire kits, and had to finish the process ourselves in order to get a feel for how to do things in the wilderness. Then we got to work with the bow method and tried to make enough friction to get a flame. Not everyone in the class made flame that day – and it’s not too surprising that the men in the group who couldn’t get it to work were more upset than the women. But I made fire! It was awesome.
I absolutely want to continue to keep that skill sharp, and am interested in the more advanced level survival classes someday. While I don’t actually think the zombie apocalypse is a thing, I do worry about being prepared in the face or natural or economic disaster. It would not take much to disrupt my easy way of life. This next year, as always, I’m interested in learning something that will make me feel ready – for what, I don’t know. But ready and confident – like the feeling of being able to start your own fire.
PS. In 2011 I wrote this.