There is a TV show called "Naked
and Afraid" on the Discovery Channel. On the show people are
dropped off in a remote place and left for three weeks with
virtually nothing except two tools, a knife, a fire starter, or
whatever. The program is how they adapt and whether they are able to
Day One – Time to take off
clothes. Don't look, Edith! Nobody wants to see that many sags and
wrinkles. What is in the burlap bags? Grandpa has an ax. Grandma has
a cooking pot.
Day Two – Build a shelter
from brush and leaves. Are they kidding? Old folks were chopping
wood before they were born. Get out of the way and watch the chips
Day Three – Getting thirsty,
needing water after all the wood chopping. Grandma uses dowser rod
and hunts for a place to dig a well.
Day Four – Need fire.
Grandpa rubs two sticks together while Grandma gathers kindling. A
toasty bonfire in no time. What's so difficult about this?
Day Five – The bugs and
skeeters are biting in places we can't mention. Grandpa makes a
poultice of wild tobacco to put on the bug bites and take away the
Day Six – Grandma cooks up a
mess of poke sallet to go with the possum Grandpa knocked out of a
tree. He's been throwing rocks since childhood and is a pretty good
Day Seven– Raining outside
so have to stay in shelter. To pass the time Grandpa makes a sling
shot with a stick and possum gut.
Day Eight – Still raining.
Grandma weaves baskets. Grandpa whittles to pass the time. He
doesn't make anything, he just whittles.
Day Nine – Sunny at last.
Grandpa shoots some birds with his sling shot and Grandma roasts
them over the fire. Tastes just like chicken.
Day Ten – Scouting around,
Grandma finds a wild persimmon tree and Grandpa spots a bee tree.
Day Eleven – Grandpa smokes
bees out of tree and gathers honey in Grandma's pot.
Day Twelve – Grandma and
Grandma improve shelter with a rock and clay chimney and stuff clay
in cracks. This should keep the cabin warmer and make cooking
Day Thirteen – Grandpa
doesn't feel so good. Grandma boils some roots and makes sassafras
tea to cure his stomach problem.
Day Fourteen – Grandpa
decides to go fishing. He digs worms for bait and chops down cane
for a fishing pole.
Day Fifteen – Grandma roasts
the fish on a splint in the fireplace and serves with some of the
wild fruit she picked. Delicious feast!
Day Sixteen – Grandma
gathers wild herbs and mushrooms for her medicine bag, in case of
any further ailments.
Day Seventeen – Grandpa
checks his traps and brings home the squirrels that he caught.
Grandma skins and boils up a pot of squirrel stew and cattail root.
Day Eighteen – Grandpa chops
wood to make a raft, which they will need to travel down the creek
to their extraction point on Day 21. Grandma helps him tie the raft
together with vines.
Day Nineteen – Grandpa goes
hunting and kills a rabbit with his slingshot. They make stew and
eat a final meal to keep up their strength before leaving the cabin.
Day Twenty – Tomorrow they
will leave the wilderness. They sing folk songs around the campfire
and are thankful they have come this far.
Day Twenty-One – The raft
holds up pretty well in the creek. They use the long poles Grandpa
chopped to guide it away from snags and floating debris.
The adventure is over. Grandma and
Grandpa survived the way their ancestors always have and achieved a
survival rating of 10.0.
The hardest part was keeping their
private parts blurred out and hidden from the TV camera. Next time,
they will use fig leaves.