Saturday, August 12, 2006

Waist Knot, Want Not

I'm a little nervous. There were two things I was pretty sure I would have when I got here, but I don't.

I was pretty certain I would get some kind of ailment from traveling, being exposed to the intense tropical climate, and eating and drinking sustenance that my stomach isn't familiar with. Some of the volunteers have already gotten sick, but luckily it hasn't been anything too detrimental. I'm feel like I'm just waiting for something to hit me.

The other thing I was pretty certain I would have is water. I mean it's so plentiful, right? For the past week, we've been in Bartica and although the dorms here are luxurious compared to the dorms in Georgetown, it does not have a water well. The water that we've been using is collected in big black tanks when it rains. When that water is depleted, we have to do a little rain dance.

The Gods must have been smiling down at us the day we ran out of water. All the toilets were unflushed, laundry was undone, and people were unbathed. Basically, it was smelly. That afternoon it downpoured like no other rainstorm I've seen. All the volunteers ran outside, and many like myself were carried and forced to enjoy the cool rain. We danced, wheelbarrowed and played with the local children in the rain. Someone brought out bottles of shampoo and we all took the most refreshing shower outside in the fields.
Hopefully it rained enough for us to continue having a steady supply of water. But now after I hand wash my clothes, I use the dirty water to flush the toilets. Americans make up 5% of the world's population, but use 15% of the world's fresh water. Don't waste water... it's precious.

A rainbow over Bartica Secondary School after the rain

How not to take a bucket shower: fill up your water first

Not my picture. I'm not that good of a photographer. This is off the Essequibo River near Bartica.


stinkylin said...

dont' play with dirty south american children, they have diseases.

Anonymous said...

The bucket shower picture is out of focus.

Please shoot that picture again.

You may also exercise the option to not use the towel.

Thank you.

A whole dollar if you can guess who this is.