I got up today and decided to keep track of the amount of effort I exert to access and use water on a daily basis. Here’s what I tracked in the first 3 hours of my day:
Commode—Distance: 32.5 Feet
Traversing through the darkness at 6:30A, I stumble through a minefield of scattered pillows along the way to a porcelain throne already holding a supply of water.
Shower—Distance: 5 Feet
From the commode, I lean forward slightly to reach behind the curtains, grab the handle and push it counterclockwise. Then the hard part comes…waiting 30 seconds until the water becomes sufficiently warm.
Kitchen—Distance: 115 Feet
After toweling off and garbing up, the real journey for water begins. Down carpeted stairs and across hardwood floors to the kitchen I go. Here I trek through a maze of tables, chairs and islands to fill-up Rudy’s water bowl and make coffee. Once again, the waiting game is brutal. It can take up to 10-12 minutes for the teapot to whistle, the French Press to brew and the coffee to be ready.
Bathroom—Distance: 125 Feet
From the kitchen, it’s several paces to the office for a few hours of work. Around 9:30A, I finally get back up to brush the teeth. Another trip up the same stairs from whence I came and to the same bathroom where the day began. Here, I thoroughly brush for 5-6 minutes (in case my dentist is reading this), having to reach out, rotate my wrist and turn the water on/off several times throughout.
And this all got me thinking how it compares to those who have no clean water. Who can’t walk to a faucet and flip it on and off. There is not faucet.
Instead, in the same three hours it takes me, some women and children are walking miles to collect water from the nearest swamp, pond or river. Three hours just to collect water! And on the way back, they’re lugging a full 40-lb. can of water that’s nowhere close to safe to use.
BUT…they don’t have to. A water project by Charity: Water can bring safe water nearby. It can give women time to do other essential things and allow kids to earn an education.
Thanks so much for all your generous giving to The Aperture Effect so far!