Is Your Home Your Castle?

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Last Updated on October 29, 2020

Why leave a perfectly good home, one with an emergency generator, water, and food stored, ammo, hidden gun safes, and an understanding of all the points of approach and egress? What could drive you from such a place, other than a Preschool opening next door?

A walk-through of my home with the goal of answering the above questions, was scary, period. Under the premise that my home was “intact” after a natural disaster, or not at ground zero when the SHTF, how does it really stack up for the short-term as a place to hunker down?

The “NOT GOOD” list: My electrical panel and water shut off are outside the fence, which is a gated 7’ cinder block wall, nicely painted 😉 so they are exposed to the street and anyone walking by or wanting to “drop-in”. I have to leave the house to get to them. The electrical panel can be locked with a padlock or combination lock (yeah, right, who in their right mind puts a combination lock on a box they may need to open in the middle of the night, in a blizzard?) But mine, probably like yours, is made of metal barely stronger than aluminum foil soaked in spray starch. And locking down the water shut off valve? Kids, toilets, toys placed in toilets, magic lever pulled, you get the picture. Plus, there is an additional exposed water shut off valve at the connection of the house plumbing to the city water supply, the one the city will “lockdown” if you don’t pay the bills and the one that would surely on a fine if you even look at it.

Next issue, my fenced property, again, is a cinder-block wall, but only 7’ high, and even I can still scale a 7’ wall, plus pistol rounds from a 9mm, 40 mm, or a .45 ACP will penetrate it, it may take two to three to get through both sides, but the wall can be taken down with a pistol. And the house is stucco over a wood frame, drywall, lots of windows, and on a corner lot. The only thing this stops is the screams from inside getting out.

It gets better, all the windows are ground level, easy to approach, and the landscaping has some softball-sized rocks readily available. It is a single story with blinds and shades that are very nice but print the inside lights even at dusk or dawn.

Okay, what else? Having a fuel-powered portable generator means it must be ventilated, read “outside”, the now mostly-mostly-closed dwelling as I have to run the extension cords into the location of the refrigerator as well as power cords to recharge other electrical devices; I have an electric stove, so do I plan to cook outside on the BBQ, again, outside!

Of course, noise from the generator will give away the fact that you and yours are there, fuel for the generator must be safely stored and rationed. And then, it gets ugly.

Disposal of waste – human and otherwise. If city water is lost, then disposing of human waste becomes a real issue. Dig a latrine in the side yard? I do have one bright spot here, I have a 12,000-gallon swimming pool. But what I do not know is just how many buckets of pool water it will take to get solid human waste through the house plumbing to the now not-operating city sewage system? Common sense tells me that this will work temporarily. At least it is a good use for the chlorinated pool water, other than putting out flaming arrows in case of an attack.

So, what is my plan? First thing is to see if I have enough disc space to write a plan, a big plan. Then to figure out what I missed in my assessment. I was caught in the first of three blizzards that shut down Denver International Airport, in 2003. (Others occurred in 2006 and 2016.) What was the item people ran out of first? Disposable diapers. No stores at the airport stocked them and parents traveled with small supplies. It was bad, we were locked down for three days! The point is what you don’t think of can kill you, or in this case, make you many new enemies.

And yes, there is a GOOD list: Guns, ammo, food, and water are in abundant supply, just not stored in the best location. I suggest doing a similar walkthrough of your “castle”, the resulting depression is only temporary.

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A former rocket scientist (really) who has traveled the world, father, freedom lover, hates to stay indoors, and loves wild places, people and things. PC challenged, irreverent but always relevant and always looking to learn new things.

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John D

Thanks Wild Bill. Your article made me think about my own home. On the plus side, my home is brick. I could easily board-up most of the windows and reinforce the doors. I know that wouldn’t stop a determined intruder, but it would cause them to make a lot of noise. I have weapons, with which to deal with that threat. My biggest fear is being burned out, but that would probably be from the top down, due to the brick. Any suggestions?

RL Puckett

Well, Wild Bill… sounds like you need to move! *laugh* Unless you are very well heeled $$$$$, few of us reside in homes that can withstand a concerted onslaught, whether by nature or man. But, its what we have and unless you find yourself in the thick of it (whatever “it” is) its better than being out in either a vehicle or (certainly) on foot.


Have you checked into “security screens” for the windows? They claim they are “impervious to any tool a burglar might use”. I doubt they are bullet proof, but might work against knives, bats, stones and maybe even axes.


I don’t know how the security screens are attached to allow exit but not removal by an intruder; that is a good point. As far as the appearance, they are claimed to look “just like regular screens” which should not offend the HOA or significant other.

Yep, just like “idiot proof”, they always come out with better idiots..

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