Sometimes people ask what living in Blantyre is like, it’s really hard to describe unless you’re actually living in these conditions. I can say that it’s much different than Liberia, but more on that in a future post.
The major problem we have been facing over the last eight days is no running water. You heard that correctly, we haven’t had ANY running water (except for about an hour each night around 3am) of running water.
Now, you may think, oh that’s not that bad, but let me just outline a few difficulties this has posed for us…keeping in mind that it has been eight days and I’m not sure when it’s going to be fixed; we’re in a water shortage.
1. No Showers- Having no running water means no showers, obviously. We haven’t been able to shower in our home for over a week. Fortunately, the College of Medicine is just down the street and we’ve been able to sneak in and shower there every day. Also, just to state the obvious Blantyre is EXTREMELY hot! Meaning we sweat constantly, it isn’t pleasant if we can’t shower daily.
2. No Toilet- Flushing- Umm…this is by far the grossest problem we have. Something you may not think about when it comes to a water shortage is the fact that we can’t flush our toilets; it’s absolutely disgusting! We have to sleep lightly, wait until we hear the water trickling through the pipes at 3 in the morning and then run around the house as fast as we can and flush all three toilets. This process is repeatedly daily…GROSS!
3. No Laundry– We haven’t been able to do laundry for eight days. Unfortunately, the water doesn’t last long enough to run through an entire wash cycle (which is TWO HOURS LONG!) Meaning we haven’t had clean clothes in quite some time. Mike has begun to tell me he stinks, daily…poor guy 😦
4. No Dish Washing- Washing dishes has become the BIGGEST chore, ever! We cannot simply turn on the tap, soap up the water and take fifteen minutes to do all of the dishes. Instead, we have to take water by bucket-fulls, fill up one side of the sink and wash then dishes. Then, fill up the other side with clean water to rinse. The whole process takes at least an hour.
I’m not writing this post so that Mike and I look like martyrs, though it is tough. I’m writing this post because it’s interesting what you can learn to live without. Life in Blantyre is MUCH different than life in the United States; where a water shortage means that you cannot water your lawn.
As much as Mike and I are “suffering” through this time, it makes me remember all of those people that go without running water daily and pray for them.
Also, on Sunday Mary’s Meals is premiering the launch of Child 31 on YouTube; be on the lookout for celebrity endorsements!