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Nov 22, 2011

I want to crawl into a hole, or at least back to bed. I awoke this morning and again no water as the pipes from the well are frozen. This is day two.  I really want to soak in the tub.  I can’t lie I’m a little worried of what’s to come as this is only November and I hear Saskatchewan winters can be downright frigid.

The sky is blue and the sun is shining. Snow has blanketed the landscape but I am warm and cozy in the house we have rented for this next year.

We are out here, 3 people, 3 dogs, and 3 cats, a 12 minute drive from town with no vehicle until my husband gets his next break in 10 days. As a woman who chooses to live in rural Canada I have gotten pretty good at preparing my home for the inevitable unexpected but I must admit I’m a little worried and a little annoyed by the lack of water.

While we do have bottled water on hand for drinking, dishes still need to be washed, toilets need to be flushed and a shower would be so nice.

Yesterday in an effort to be proactive I took a bucket outside, filled it with snow and brought it in to melt on the stove so I could give the pets water that wasn’t from our bottled water supply. Once I got started though I melted more snow so the toilets could be flushed and even boiled some to wash the dishes and do some cleaning.  This chore took a little over an hour. This is just what they would have had to do in Little House on the Prairie, I mused. And the words of Ma Ingalls came to mind, “What cannot be cured must be endured.” and “What must be done is best done cheerfully.”

Today as I sit looking out on the Saskatchewan countryside I am still more than a little annoyed by the frozen pipes but I also know how very lucky I am-lucky for the bottled water, lucky for the snow, lucky for hydro to melt the snow, lucky to have options. I realize many people aren’t so lucky and I can’t help but do a search on the internet about water.

I stumble upon  I quickly learn that almost a billion people lack access to safe drinking water. I learn that every 20 seconds a child dies from a water-related disease. I learn that 1.2 billion people have absolutely no access to sanitation facilities. I learn that in just one day 200 million hours of women’s time is consumed collecting water.

And I learn that donating just $25 could provide water for life for one person.

I think about $25 and what that means. The last time the family went to Saskatoon we probably spent close to that on our lattes, coffees, and hot chocolates. We definitely spent more than that on our subs for lunch. I recently spent more than that on Christmas cards. And I’m slightly embarrassed to admit I spent more than that on the dog’s winter coat (she truly did need one in these parts)

The American Thanksgiving is coming up and once again I am reminded of just how much I have to be thankful for. If you are reading this than you have access to a computer and the internet and I will assume safe water. No matter what else is going on in your life right now when it comes to water you can consider yourself one of the lucky ones. Good or bad, fortunate or unfortunate, things often just come down to a matter of perspective.

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Posted: Nov 22, 2011 10:13am


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Denise L.
, 2, 2 children
Wolf Lake, Quebec, Canada
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