Water’s Role In Our Lives

My mom woke me up at an alarmingly effective way today. I was still in my dream world, when I heard my mother’s voice calling me, telling me that our apartment building’s water would be shut off for maintenance the whole day. Hearing this, I bolted right out of bed and ran for the bathroom to check the water, all the while my mom laughs at my reaction as this is the first time in a long time that I woke up extremely early and very quickly.

Checking the faucet, I find out that I’m too late as there truly is no more water. The water usually gets turned back on around 7 pm at night. Luckily, my mom had anticipated it and had left me a bucket of water. Just one bucket. But I was contented enough with that. Needless to say, that was the quickest shower I ever had.

On a side note: I doubt “shower” is the correct term I want to use, since all I’m really trying to do is translate ligo, from my Cebuano mother tongue, to something in English, and the closest term I can relate it with is “shower” or “bath”. But then the act itself doesn’t correspond with the meaning of either English words as maligo basically means washing oneself with water, and not necessarily immersing oneself in water or to pour water over oneself. I mean, I use a bucket to kaligo, for goodness sake, not a bathtub or a shower-head!

After my ligo, I bragged to my mom how well I managed with just one bucket of water, and she said how on any other day, I probably wouldn’t be able to manage it at all. And that shut me up really quickly as she had a good point; I usually take at least half an hour to an hour just to kaligo. But this got me thinking though.

Our present generation has never really been put through as many hardships and difficulties as previous ones had gone through; almost everything has been handed to us on silver platters (and I mean Generations Y, Z, and Alpha specifically). Hearing tales from my mom and dad, they say that water wasn’t as easy to come buy as it is today; back in the Philippines, when they needed water, they went to these public water pumps, like the one shown below.

They’re still used in the Philippines to this day actually, but more commonly so in the probinsya (a.k.a the countryside provinces). A few of these are usually scattered around, out in the open, for everyone in certain parts of a barangay to use (I don’t think there’s an English translation for this word at all…barrio, maybe? But that’s Spanish. Technically, it is considered the smallest administrative division in the Philippines and is considered the native Filipino term for a district or village. In reality, barangays really aren’t like villages or districts at all.).

Clean, running water is a commodity that very few actually have access to, but those who do have it tend to take it for granted and even waste it. Only about 2.5% of water in the whole world can be consumed, but since 1/3 of the world’s water is frozen, only around 1% of water can be used for human consumption. With these percentages known by many, why do we have the nerve to waste water? Conserve water as much as possible since one of the key to the survival of our race depends upon it.

More information can be perused on unwater.org for facts and figures, while a more concise look at how water waste impacts our race can be seen on water.org (it even has an interactive map that shows how many people lack safe water). Water wastage causes great concern, seeing as the homo sapien species — us — relies heavily upon it.

Also, while researching about water waste, I also stumbled upon these really interesting visual statistics:

This infographic I found on water usage between rich and poor countries might also be worth looking at:

I seem to have been lost in translation for the first part of this post, but I don’t think I’ll ever be able to escape that since my thoughts come in a jumble of languages. So please do forgive me for any confusion caused.




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