Twice a week every week, lug four empty bottles of Nestlé Pure Life water to a shop near home and lug back, one by one, four full bottles of Nestlé Pure Life. Each bottle contains 18.9 liters of safe drinking water. The labels on the bottles advise to drink at least eight glasses of water every day.
This is our drinking water, our tea-making water, the water we use for cooking, the water we make ice with. Drinking tap water — if you are lucky enough to have a tap with running water — would mean putting your family’s health at some serious risk.
For our other water needs — washing ourselves, laundry and house cleaning — we have to buy a tanker that holds 5,000 liters. Deliveries are so unpredictable that the tanker might arrive at 3 a.m. But even then, it’s welcome.
Sometimes travel to Europe, and one of the unapologetic joys of this privilege is to be able to open the tap and gulp down a glass of water or even slurp without fear from a public fountain. That’s the taste of civilization.