Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pumping Water

When I was 9, I went to my grandmother's place outside the city. She had a small house without the comforts of home that most of us now take for granted. There was no electricity, plumbing, indoor toilet, fridge, stove, or microwave. To get water I had to bring a bucket to the a water pump at the general store which was about a 10 minute walk away. Although it doesn't seem far, it felt like it was 10 miles away when I had to carry a bucket or a big jug of water.

Getting to the water pump was easy, but then you had to line up with your container behind lots of other containers depending on the time. If you arrived early evening then you would be lucky to find less that ten containers lined up. If you arrived in the morning or lunch time, you are likely to find 30 to 40 containers ahead of you. Oh yeah, you had to pump your own water. The pump handle was a six foot 2 x 10 inch piece of wood. Not so easy for a nine year old.

One evening I dropped the big glass jug filled with water just as I was reaching the house. I walked in not saying anything to my grandmother. I just waited for her to ask about the jug. I just didn't have the guts to tell her. She did ask me a few minutes later and I was lucky to get only some scolding.

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