So day 6 rolled around today and we’re still here.
I think the decision was sealed today when Adam woke up at his usual 6am and crawled under the stiff grey blanket into bed with me and asked when we were going. He probably feels the same sense of unease as I do, or maybe it’s just emanating from me and he’s picking up the vibe. Whatever, we’ve decided to pack up and move on tomorrow after morning chow.
I got to have a good chat with the sergeant today. Seems he’s the reluctant leader of this rag-tag mob. He doesn’t really relish running this camp, but he can’t think of anybody better qualified to keep everybody alive past breakfast, so had to step up when he stumbled (probably, knowing him, marched) into town three years ago. At that time it was nothing more than a bunch of scared and hungry citizens holed up in the upper floors of some barricaded apartment blocks. It took a year’s hard graft to get it up to its current standards. He has designs of reclaiming the entire town and walling it off from the rest of the world, but that is way out in the future. Right now he’s happy to keep things running as they are until they start outgrowing, or more likely, using up all the available resources around here.
We spoke at length about the types of people he has in the community. There are those that want to help out in any way they can. He pointed out that I was one of those, and was even complimentary about how Adam fit right in and did whatever he needed to do around the place. There are those that want to run this place themselves, as some kind of hippy community with love and mung beans and peace to all zombies. Then there are the general layabouts expecting that everything is provided to them on a platter without having to lift a finger themselves.
I told him my FIFO motto – Fit In or Frack Off, and he seemed to like that, but his only concern is that the security of the place is maintained and that everybody has enough to eat. Beyond that, the general layabouts got no more and no less than anybody else. I got the sneaking suspicion that those that pulled their weight got slightly larger portions of rations and the odd snifter of booze when a bottle store raid was pulled off.
I can’t understand this mentality of people that think they are owed anything. Do they think others are also owed something for nothing too? How do you arrive at the conclusion that by doing nothing, you have the same right to your fair share as the guy next to you that works his butt off all day to achieve those things? I simply cannot plumb the depths of a twisted mentality such as that.
So I thank the sergeant for his hospitality and everything and tell him that Adam and I are off the next day to look around further up North. We both check out his maps and he gives me a few pointers of where to avoid, and possible locations of this mythical lab I’m supposed to be looking for.
As a parting gift he pulls out of a cupboard a pistol. He tells me it’s a 9mm, and he plonks a box of ammo next to it. I thank him very much, the thoughts of the layabouts expecting something for nothing still ringing in my ears, but tell him I’m happy with the M16 from the army guys and my handy dandy machete. He then looks up at me with a grin and says “This ain’t for you son, this is for the boy.” I hadn’t even thought of arming Adam. He has his knife, which he’s used on a few occasions, but I’d never considered how old a kid has to be before you give them something as lethal as a gun before.
We really do live in interesting times.