Saturday, May 7, 2011


it is only 815 and i feel like i've already lived the whole day. have you ever had a morning like that?

last night the water pump that sends us water burned out. luckily we won't have the problems we had in our last apartment (you know, no water ever) because the owner uses the same pump. it should be fixed today, but even 18 hours without water is a nuisance.

the country has been lacking rain for the past five months. reservoirs are low, and there are farmers whose animals are dying in droves. water pulled from the rivers for drinking carries diseases and those water-born bacterias are wreaking havoc on the most destitute communities.

i can't really complain about 18 hours water-free.

water is regulated, sent through the pipes when there is extra. if you're lucky, the pipes dump into a holding tank and you're set for a few days. most people aren't so lucky. barrels and buckets get filled; water to be rationed out until the next time it flows freely. children play in and near, far too frequently children drown.

i can live with a sink full of dirty dishes.

tanks and buckets full of clean water attract mosquitoes. the bite of a dengue mosquito debilitates: pain, fever, vomiting. there is no magic "malaria" medicine for this bug. if you can afford a hospital, you have a better chance of not dying from hemorraghic shock.

at least we have running water, clean and purified enough to shower, cook and clean without risk of infection.

because we all remember how cholera ripped through haiti and decimated a people in a matter of months.

i can mop my floor tomorrow. clean the dishes later. and bathe with a bucket.
because we have water to drink. water to share.
it's only been 18 hours.
some people live a life time with no clean water.


Erin said...

Way to keep that in perspective. And here I was complaining all week because we didn't have the Internet hooked up yet. (Shamefully tucking my tail between my legs.) Thanks for that reminder!

Peace, Love, & Travel said...

I just came across this blog because I was doing a little research on teaching English in RD, and I wanted to see someone's perspective who is actually doing it.

My interest in teaching in the Dominican Republic came from my absolute love of dominican music and dance (bachata, merengue) and the idea of being on a beautiful island surrounded by beautiful people. Thank you for keeping it real with your blog, and reminding me that there is more to this country, and that poverty is an issue there! It's so easy to romantacize a beautiful place and forget what's beneath the surface! I look forward to reading more of your posts!