We’ve blogged about water cuts and power outages, which are part of our normal life here. On average we have about 24 without water and power each week, which means some weeks it may be longer and other weeks it may be shorter. It’s in inconvenience, but we just deal with and go on, however, when it goes on for days, we begin to not only get cranky, but a bit concerned.
We had five days without water (Friday night – Tuesday night). What does that mean? It means that the city water supplied to our home is off. Most of the time we have our water cut so another neighborhood can have water, however, when it goes on for days, it’s usually due to a supply line puncture.
We are blessed to have a chateau that is piped into our home – thank you previous tenants! This chateau (basically a small water tower that is filled with 900 liters of water) is great, however, at the same time, it’s a trickle that comes out of faucets or toilets. We try to only use it for slowly refilling our toilets – we want to be able to flush the brown down and you can only let the yellow mellow so long, and to wash hands.
We have a barrel that probably holds 100 or so liters of water that we use to refill our ten liter bottles that we use for bathing. When we pour about four liters of water into a stockpot to heat up for bathes or for cleaning dishes, I feel like I’m on Little House on the Prairie. Once the water is heated, we dump it into our bathtub (another big shout out to whoever put it in because normally one just has a shower, no tub) and add some room temperature water and bathe. We’ve also done bucket baths where the water is in a bucket and you scoop it out. Either way, it gets the job done. Monday when I heard the rain approaching, I ran outside to refill our empty ten liter bottles with barrel water to have on hand. I did this because we have a gutter system (thank you previous tenants for that system too) that will drain the rainwater into our barrel and refill it, so I didn’t fear in draining the barrel water because I knew it would refill quickly. Since I haven’t showered, only bucket bathed the last four days, I was seriously considering running out in the rain with a bar of soap and enjoy a shower that way.
What about drinking water? Yes, we can only drink filtered water here. The filter system we have chosen due to many reasons (if you ever want to know more, you can ask and get a dissertation on why we have the system we do) is a UV in line system, which means you need water flowing through the pipes and electricity for it to work properly. We keep a seven liter igloo type container filled and keep a large supply of bottles filled with filtered water on hand to use during water cuts. Our back-up supply is diminishing after four days. The picture below shows how many bottles of water we went through in four days.