Saturday, March 22, 2014


Water - we need it in so many ways. We drink it. We use it to wash our clothes. We use it to wash the dishes. We use it to clean our house and vehicle. We use it to water our garden.

Right now we are in the rainy season. The rainy season officially starts at the end of October, but it doesn’t rain a lot then. By December it is raining on a regular basis, as in everyday! Sometime in the middle of January the rain steps up its pace. I call them gully washers. A lot of rain is falling most everyday. In February there is usually about a 1 week break from this rain. This February that didn’t happen. Although, the first week of March we had a whole week where it only rained once.  We had sunshine and blue skies.   We are loved it. This must be our late Feb. break. We are also loving the green grass that all this rain is giving us.

Like some of you in the States, we are on town water. But unlike you we cannot just open the facet and get water anytime we want. The water is sent most of the time twice a day, around 6 AM and again at 6PM. So you have to store your water so that when you open the facet you will have some.

We have a dry erase marker board on the kitchen wall where I try to keep track of the water on a four week cycle. Did it come or not? When the water comes for two weeks straight, you start to forget to go look. Also, Steve looks when he comes back from morning exercise. If he doesn’t exercise one day, then I need to remember to go look. Keeping track of the water coming helps us on our usage. If it didn’t come, maybe I will not do the wash that day. Also, we limit the amount of water on baths.

In the middle of January the water didn’t come for 5 days. We also spent the week leading up to this dry time forgetting to check up on the water. So we were not as prepared as we could have been.

The Thursday of that dry spell was a nice sunny day. So Steve and our worker, Clement, built a rain gutter to catch the rain at the shed next to our water storage well. It drains right into the well. Thursday night we had one of our gully washer rains and it almost filled the empty well. When this nice rain came, we were at the point of going the next day to our friends outside of town to fill up 55 gallon water drums.

Once the water company got the part to fix their pump we had great water for two weeks. Then something happened and no water for 5 days again. Five days seems to be a magic number for water not to come.

This time we were better prepared. We have four barrels with water stored in them. By limiting our water and with the help of the rain we didn’t need to load up the barrels to get more.

Whatever the problem, it was fixed and water came. One day later Steve had all the barrels full again for the next time. We now have 6 barrels. So if we manage to keep track of the water coming, we will be prepared for the next water outage.


The blue pipe / rain gutter on the shed.  In the foreground is our mud brick, cement plastered water storage well.  A piece of plywood and a truck bed cover keep the leaves and dirt out.