Just imagine for a second

There’s a box, 1m x 1m x 1m, made from pine, it will be shipped to a remote location, with you alongside, where you will spend the next ten years, in solitude. All. By. Yourself.

In that box you will be able to fit in as much stuff as you possibly can. Where you’re going there will be water, plant and animal life, although, turning it into food, you’ll have to that yourself. You will have no shelter and no communication with the outside world except ten years to the day when you’re picked back up.

I’m fascinated by these scenarios, and a part of me would certainly be thrilled at the thought of having to survive my way out (apart from the pain of being separated from my wife and kids for that long). I also love hearing about what other people would do in such a situation, and more importantly, listen to what they’d pack. It always makes for an interesting debate, and, quickly shows you who will likely perish in the first few hours.

What is in your itinerary?

I’m sure some of you will blatantly wonder why I’d pack what I do. Others will probably appreciate the essentials. I’m curious and really want to hear your thoughts after you read this list, what would you pack? Let us know in the comments below.

  • My Victorinox Swiss Champ
  • My leather bound journal
  • Box of lead pencils
  • Sony Cassette Walkman with a single album – Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’
  • iPod with top 100 from each of the last 5 years
  • MIL-SPEC 550 Paracord
  • 3m x 3m canvas tarp
  • 2L stainless steel water bottle
  • 3 x 15cm ferrocerium rods
  • Single photo album with my favourite family photos
  • Comprehensive first aid kit (without resuscitation masks to save on space)
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Gorilla tape
  • Ibuprofin
  • Paracetamol
  • Antibiotic cream
  • Oral Antibiotics
  • 5 x outfits, mixture of cotton and wool
  • Folding Shovel
  • Axe
  • 55L backpack (fitted with 72 hr survival essentials)
  • Fishing line, hooks, sinkers
  • Wide brim hat
  • Survival knife with full tang and 90° edge
  • The Bible
  • Books (A brief History of Time, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, The Alchemist, Richest Man in Babylon, Unlimited Power, Briar Rose)
  • Cast iron camp oven
  • Woolen blanket
  • Pillow
  • Pocket mirror
  • A copy of each of Dave Canterbury’s books
  • 7300 500mg Vitamin C tablets
  • Sewing kit

I’d say that sums it up really. Most of these are what I’d classify as essential items for survival. Then I added a few that were comfort, then a few luxury items.

The thing that comes to mind when I put this list together is what it would really be like living alone for such a long time. Away from it all. Away from people. Away from technology. A way from the world and it’s constant progression.

Years ago, while I was studying at university, I actually desired the ability to live in an isolated cabin, filled with nothing but books, away from everyone and everything. My friends would laugh at the idea. Nowadays I’m so in love with my wife and kids I could never do so in reality, nor would I want to, but that part aside, there is something invigorating about the idea of being alone with oneself for such a long period of time.

I think there is much to learn about the world, while away from it. I would imagine reading books would eventually be like reading the words in between the words, thus developing an ability to look deeper into people, their message and expose what drove them to write as they did.

Being connected to nature would connect one with themself. Being away from technology would mean you come back to it without bias, like a child, learning for the first time, and you’d probably do more with it than most. In better ways.



Read #blogtober 9: I’m sick. A poem to my community.

4 thoughts on “One box. Ten years. All alone.

  1. This post definitely gives the reader something to think about!
    My initial thought while reading your list was that your iPod and cassette player would probably die within the first couple of weeks… days if you played it every day lol. Besides those, it seems you’ve definitely thought of a lot.
    I have no idea where to being with making a list like that. 10 years is an incredibly long time. I feel sure the brain would simply lose it from being away from civilization that long.
    I guess the one thing that would be at the top of my “What I would pack” list would be a satellite phone.
    Maybe this would break the rules, I’m not sure. But after a certain amount of time, I’d like to be able to call someone and get the heck outa there.
    IDK. Just me I guess lol.
    Being alone is great, but if you’re truly ALONE for a very very long time… Well, there’s only so much one can take I would think.

    ~ Ray

    1. What I’ve found is that a question raised Kirk the one I did in this piece really gets one to thinking about what truly matters and what they value the most. Hearing your feelings makes it clear you value connection, and people.❤️ It’s a nice little exercise to do.

      I thought of adding batteries or solar to help charge the iPod and cassette player, probably could fit those in, so thanks for the addition 🤓.

      But yes, 10 years is a very long time. A long time not also to be away from others, but for many, a long time to be with themselves. That’s the really interesting part.

      Thanks a bunch for your really thoughtful input here Ray. I loved it.

      Ivan. 🤓

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