Monday, February 8, 2010

Sand, Sand everywhere and not a drop to drink

I know, that is not how the line goes, but there is not water everywhere. And really having a drop to drink is not the problem. When it comes to drinking water there are pallets of bottled water just about everywhere you go. But when it comes to water for any other reason, now that is where we run into a problem. You see we live on the side of the Euphrates River. And that is where we get our water from. River water goes into the ground water table and we pump it from there, clean and filter it and then it is put into holding areas to be shipped out to all of the bathrooms, laundry facilities, and dining facilities. It is all potable water so it is safe to drink, but it is far from limitless. Right now we are getting good rain, but in a month or two that will all dry up and water will be short out here. And when that starts to happen we really have to watch how much water we use. And come summer that leads to a water ration.
Now the way the ARMY sees it, we need about 15 gallons of water each. That is for everything. Shower, Toilet, Clothes Wash, and cleaning stuff in the DEFAC (Dining Facilities). Now 15 gallons a day might sound like a lot, but really it is a very small amount. We are talking about as little water as you can use. Almost no water to shave. And turning the water on and off while in the shower. The toilets use a lot of water (1.5 gallons per flush) and everything else goes to laundry and DEFAC. It really takes some getting used to. And you tend to get really upset when you walk in to the showers and hear water just running and running. But I guess I can’t really complain all that much. I mean we do get daily showers. And that is saying a lot. Just a few years back out here we were happy for weekly showers. And at least they are hot. Oh wait… That is big problem number two. Since I have been here I have had one, that is”1” hot shower. Most days it is at a temperature slightly below warm, and at least once a week there is no hot water at all and showers become slightly painful. But again, at least I do get to shower. We just might have to change that little ditty to “Shave and some frostbite, two bits!”
And speaking of. It’s time to scrape my face.

Back To The Sand


  1. WOW! That's some serious adjustments. They tell us to store a gallon of water per person for hurricanes. That's just to drink.I can understand the cold shower, since we went without after Hurricane Wilma for weeks, w/o power, running water,hot water. But it is nothing to compare what and where you are. God bless you!
    So what is the weather like?? Hot, cold mild, humid??Here in Fl, its cool, and mild. Normally it's humid and blazing hot.

  2. 15 gallons of water for all of that is not much at all. I'm sure there's a lot of adjustment to that small amount of water. I guess if the shower water is cold they figure people won't stand there as long. I suppose that only works in the cooler weather and everyone will be clamoring for cold water in the heat of summer.

    Take care and maybe you could "sneak" one of those bottles of drinking water to shave with ;)!