Cloudy Water and a Day of Reckoning
I ran out of bottled water during a recent holiday weekend. I usually keep a few gallons on hand, along with a couple of cases of bottles. This is in addition to a purifying attachment I have on my kitchen faucet as well. However, a lot of people came over to the house, and I was soon out of bottled water. The filter on the sink was almost at the end of its useful life as well.
I went out to the store to get some more bottled water, but supplies were limited, prices were high, and I didn’t feel like waiting in a long line to check out. I started to drive to another store, but the traffic was so bad that I decided just to go home and get some more water during the week.
I got home and, of course, the filter on the sink went out. The material inside somehow collapsed and prevented any water from coming out of the faucet. We had to remove the filter and drink from the tap for the rest of the party. The water on the tap isn’t the problem in the beginning. We have pretty good municipal water that I test from time time. However, it’s kind of hard and has a slight aftertaste.
Life Got in the Way
Things got busy during the following week and I got behind schedule. I kept either forgetting to go to the store and load up on water and filters, or simply procrastinated. This went on for two weeks. I was drinking from the tap, and then going for the sodas, juices and even milk when I got bored with the bad tasting water.
Two things happened at the end of that two week period. First, the refrigerator stopped working because it needed to be cleaned and serviced. Everything inside was spoiling. Second, I turned on the water the day after I learned about the refrigerator problem, and it was filthy-cloudy. It had a strong chemical smell and it irritated my nose when I sniffed the glass.
The village made an announcement that they had to add a strong chemical to fix some kind of problem, and that nobody should drink the water for at least a day. Boiling wasn’t an option. The system needed to be flushed. Their recommendation? Go to the store and get some bottled water.
So, I went to a few stores, and the shelves were EMPTY. I went to a couple of more stores further away and their shelves were empty as well. I had to go back home and work for a couple of hours, so I ended up drinking some of the soda and juice that didn’t yet spoil in the refrigerator.
By the time all was said and done, I had to drive for three hours to find two cases of water and a pack of faucet filters. I had to wait another day before the refrigerator got fixed, and it wasn’t until the end of the next day before regular water service was restored.
The moral of the story? Always, always, always have a three day supply of water for drinking, cooking and cleaning on hand at all times. You never know when something will go wrong and force you to use that stockpile.
While my situation was more of a comedy of errors and stupid decisions, many survival scenarios that are far more serious start out in the same way. Never take chances with basic resources such as food, water and shelter. Otherwise, you are almost guaranteed to encounter a day of reckoning that may not be as forgiving as mine was.