Thursday, March 3, 2011

There are things we take for granted... water. I had just always thought it would be available. And then one day, the borehole (well) in our village broke. It was broken for nearly a month before the government engineers finally came up to fix it. We were actually lucky to have it fixed in that 'short' amount of time. Another borehole in a near-by village was broken for months on end. Don't get me wrong...I am SO thankful that someone came to fix the matter the amount of time it took.
During the month of having a broken borehole, the girls of our village had their days filled up with finding ways to acquire water. Water truly is life. Everything stops without it. No cooking, eating, drinking, washing, brewing beer, mudding the walls of their houses...everything!

Terrill & I were blessed to have a half-full water tank at our house that provided us with water during that month. But I was interested in seeing what everyone else had to do. I walked with my young friends down to their water source one day.
We walked down a steep hill to a dry riverbed. The young children had fun sliding down the dusty hill on their backsides.
While waiting her turn to collect water, my friend Kuku showed me how to climb trees barefooted and in a skirt. Quite a skill.
The make-shift watering hole was dug several feet into the ground under a bed of large rocks. The girls would climb down into the hold where water was dripping off the roots of some plant. The hole was cramped and the water polluted.
The water dripped into a muddy puddle. The girls used an old laundry detergent bucket to pick up water and pour it into their jerry cans.
Another activity while awaiting their turn to collect water was to bathe. Alice is demonstrating how they scrape their skin with a rock to get it clean. It works much like a pumice...except they use the rock everywhere they have skin. I noticed that the skin was definitely clean but also dry and scaly by the time they were finished. Some girls had skin flaking off. They attribute this problem to illness but I may have to address the vigor with which they scrub themselves with rocks some day.
When the bathing and filling up water buckets is finished, the girls heave buckets onto their heads and start up the steep incline. The whole routine of going to fetch water and get it home takes at least two hours per trip.
And the result: a bucket of dirty water. But water is water and even this polluted source of water ensures the peoples' survival.
Please think twice the next time you turn on a faucet and clean water pours forth. You are truly blessed! Pray for those who spend their lives finding water to survive.

5 comments: said...

We will also pray whether God will one day use this central aspect of Ik survival as a REDEMPTIVE ANALOGY for CHRIST HIMSELF: YESO CUA HEKESI "Jesus is the Water of Life" (John 4, which I translated with Philip the first time we met):-D

Kinnon family said...

So thankful your well was fixed relatively quickly. Our eyes are opened and we will never look at our sinks and spigots the same. Thank you. Love, the Kinnon family

velma said...

great pictures to go along with the lesson. Thanks.

The Reeds said...

Great post Amba.

I really can't fathom actually having to drink only that water. 'Brew' would sound really good at that point.

lisa j said...

when do the rains come? Glad the borehole was fixed!