High and Dry in a Waterless World

The girl next door hollered ‘Auntyji, please turn off the tap! The tank is full. The water is overflowing.’
These dratted environmental do-gooders were pesky. Their perpetual rants grated on my nerves. Save Water! Save Electricity! Save this! Save that! Didn’t the water gush out of my taps 24 hours a day? I was still squinting to see where the shortage was. One blighted chap even badgered me to monitor how much water I use to brush my teeth. They threw me dirty looks for leaving the garden tap open the whole night. Raising unnecessary brouhaha I say. My darling Bunty loved to play on the little puddles that formed by the morning. I couldn’t let him frolic in the dirty water on the roadside, could I? In fact, being the conscientious mom I was, I even got my garden pipe hooked to the Cauvery supply.

No one could fault me on my housekeeping. I insisted that the maid hose down the entire pavement and all the balconies every day. Even the driver knew, he had to hose the car daily till a nice pool glistened underneath lest madam assumed he had played truant.
That annoying girl was still shrieking something incomprehensible. I was sipping a refreshing glass of sherbet and nothing was going to shake me out of my torpor. I took a good 15 minutes before sauntering to turn off the tap. That irksome girl was still there looking daggers at me.

I didn’t usually let the water overflow for more than half an hour as a rule. Barring that one time when I had left the taps running and gone on a vacation. In my frantic search to locate my favorite shade of lip gloss, I had plain forgotten to turn them off. No big deal actually. But some people actually had the nerve to lecture me on the water wastage and for the flooding it had caused nearby – in spite of me explaining the lip gloss catastrophe. I had asked them to take a walk. It was after all my tap, my water, my money !!

And imagine their impertinence; for Holi they had actually warned ‘my’ Bunty not to spray the entire street with color. Last Holi, we had thrown this grand bash for all of Bunty’s friends, complete with a big tank of water. Well boys will be boys. The little chipmunks had jumped into the common swimming pool as well and the water had turned different shades of color. Those poor darlings couldn’t get to the loo in time, so had been forced to pee in it as well.

Then those nosey parkers had turned up again yapping away about some depleting water tables. I knew my multiplication tables too, I informed them petulantly. People will consume water their whole lives, wont they. We can’t change the way we live, just because the future looks waterless. And looking at the way people are exploding – literally crawling out of the woodwork in my opinion, it’s a no brainer we would be needing more and more water. We could drill all we want and still be left high and dry. The lucky ones could even strike oil!

Yeah, the writing’s on the wall and soon we might not have enough water for all of us. It would be upon us so fast; we would go cross eyed trying to figure out what hit us. And if push came to shove, we have it all figured out. We could do away with baths and other useless cleaning stuff and instead invent gadgets which would spray us with perfumed disinfectant powder. Food, of course, could pose a tiny problem. But again we could always rely on eating all other living things which might still be surviving which should last us, at least for a couple of years. Life would no longer be about a spiritual search for meaning, but just mean the quest for that all elusive drop of water. With the constant race for water, whoever would have the time to work or study? We could collect human fluids as well and work out ways to recycle. And don’t you pucker your nose at me! So I have just thought of these brilliant ideas for the new waterless world of tomorrow. So let’s see how long the water is going to last? 1 year.. 5 maybe ? 10 years?

Short sell the industries and schools, don’t waste money getting plumbing done on your new home, make drugs for water retention in your body, nasal clips to block out the stink of unwashed bodies, make…

Wait a minute… Was that Bunty shouting? ‘Mooommyy… there’s no water in the bathroom..’
Jeez! That was quick! I had better get to work fast before time runs out.

20 thoughts on “High and Dry in a Waterless World

  1. chsuresh63

    Hahaha! And why did you also not mention that the water was still staying on Earth and NOT vanishing into outer space – so where is the problem? 😛

  2. Clearly this is a fictional account because no one wastes water in real life. 🙂

    And..um..on the topic of recycled water – the technology for recycling sewage into drinking water is already here. Getting people to overcome the psychological barrier of drinking water ‘straight from loo to you’ is the only issue.

    1. Yeah, definitely fictional ! Whoever would hear of such outrageous wastage of water otherwise 🙂

      Ahem.. recycling body fluids would slightly be more advanced than sewage treatment plant..which assumes that there is a little water to flush 😀

  3. Motherhood brings many guilts and worries, and one such despairing thought that often crosses my mind is will my child and her generation have water when she is my age. Will the non affluent humans perish for lack of water. What a terrible and agonizing way to be wiped off earth.

    1. Looking at the way we are going.. I don’t think we would have to wait for the next generation, I think we ourselves might be witness to it in our lifetimes.
      We have been apathetic to so many things around us, its no wonder that our own apathy will lead to our destruction.

  4. You have put a fine mirror for all us there, Ash. I remember how in my childhood we would just put a palm under any running tap and drink water to our fill. I can’t even think of that today, leave alone my children, raised with water from hi-tech purifiers. It’s not the free-flowing water that has turned into liquids of dubious constancy —and I have the Ganges in mind too— it’s the free-flowing pollutants that we are saddling our mother earth with, day in and day out.

    1. You have revived memories of an era gone by..the carefree days when we used to drink water from any tap.. cupping our palms to catch the water.our children are never going to be able to do it and its such a pity.the water crisis is definitely looming and the greatest pity is that majority of us remain unaware or don’t want to acknowledge it enough to change the ways we waste water.

  5. Nobody really bothers!

    Earth Hour!:) Fun? Yeah, that’s what we had yesterday in school in the name of ;that ritual. We don’t teach anything, don’t care to learn anything. Rituals.

    Anyway, enjoyed reading this.

  6. Excellently written, Asha! Indeed, the so called free resources are just frittered away with gay abandon. Don’t know how to drill sense even in the so-called ‘educated’ lot!

    1. Thanks Rachna ! You can even make excuses for the uneducated people in the country, but how to turn a blind eye to ‘educated’ people who inspite of knowing everything just don’t care and continue to waste whatever natural resources are available.

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