Our other endeavors food-wise seem to be holding up. Our fishermen are doing well in the creeks and rivers, and while egg collection out on the farms is difficult, Aaron had the idea to set the kids to it. Some of the younger kids have made a game of finding all the places the chickens like to hide them. I watched for a few minutes on my round out to the farm this morning.
Children laughing and playing together, running around with not a care in the world. It was wonderful to hear their voices trill with happiness as they dug in piles of hay and twigs. When one of the sentries walking the trenches that mark the boundaries of the farm gave warning that a zombie had been spotted, those kids immediately stopped what they were doing and moved into defensive positions. No whining, no hesitation. It was just one zombie, but I was proud of them even more for that. They didn't brush off the threat because it was minimal.
It's a good sign for the future, knowing that the young ones are learning the right habits and reactions early on.
I'm still pretty exhausted from the marathon archery session the other night, but I'm feeling better. We ran through a huge number of arrows, and it's going to take a while to make enough to replace all the ones that were lost or broken. Aaron has kids helping with that as well. He's taking their education very seriously.
Part of why I'm feeling more upbeat despite my still-aching muscles is because of the incredible resilience of the kids. Things suck, sure, but I just can't stay down when I see the bright defiance in their eyes. They don't have a sense of doom about the world we live in. They don't see the odds against us. For them, there isn't a question of failing. We adults see how difficult the road ahead will be and find ourselves grim with the thought of facing those trials.
The kids just see it as a challenge to be faced. And you know? It's sort of an infectious attitude. I can't help but think about how far we've come and all we've survived and feel that maybe things aren't as bad as they could be.
I know it doesn't make everything suddenly perfect and lovely here at the compound, but I think everyone could benefit from trying to take a step back from how angry and scared they are. Try watching some children toss a baseball. It might give you some perspective.