The Random Writings of Rachel: Survival Guide: When You Don't Have Water

Survival Guide: When You Don't Have Water

Occasionally, our water service goes out. Thankfully, it's never gone out for days at a time, usually it's gone out in the morning and come back on by the time we go to bed. Maybe I could survive in a world without indoor plumbing, but to be honest, the way houses are designed now are not designed to work well without running water. I don't have a well or an outhouse!


My advice for surviving a water outage:

1. Ideally, you will have already taken a shower and finished doing laundry BEFORE the water stops coming. If you haven't, go with the old ponytail-that-covers-a-multitude-of-sins and save the laundry for tomorrow.

2. Try not to be in the middle of cooking a big lunch when the water goes out, or you will have to stack up the dirty dishes and let the grime dry to a crisp while you wait for water to come on again. If you become hungry, go to a restaurant or eat snacks that don't require dirty dishes.

3. Locate a bathroom within walking distance that has water service. For us, this is the bathroom at WalMart. Unless Walmart loses water at the same time as your apartment, which has also happened. Then you're out of luck.

4. Before your water shuts off, anticipate and be prepared for such an event, and save a big water bottle (We buy our drinking water in 8 liter bottles) full of tap water in your storage room instead of recycling the bottles when they're empty, so that you have some water at least. Or you could just buy a huge water bottle if the need is great, but they're not super cheap, so avoid if you can.

5. Go to work, where there is water. Stay there a long time, enjoying their faucets that work.

6. Do not play basketball after work, but before discovering that you have no water. Avoid sweating at all costs.

7. Reminisce about the good old days when you had water and how awesome that was.

8. When the water does come on, do not instantly jump into the shower with joy. Run the shower and all faucets until the water stops coming out muddy and orange. You do not want to be covered in that stuff, believe me.

Have fun, and may your water always work!

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In recent history, we've had the internet, the electricity, and the water go out. The internet went out for a 5 day stretch last week, but the electricity has only ever gone out for an hour or two since we've been at this apartment. Which do you think would be the hardest for you to live without?

24 comments:

  1. Hah! our water goes out quite frequently here....as does the electricity and the internet.... :( I find it hardest to live without water: two small children = lots of food needed/lots of clothing needing washing!!! I'm quite the expert at ensuring we have 'emergency' supplies of water....I always keep 2 x 25L bottles near the washing machine - just in case.....loved your list....it made me chuckle (especially about the 'no sweating' one....when our water goes out, there's obviously no hot water and I simply cannot shower without hot water...so it always throws my running schedule out.....)....

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  2. WOW! I couldn't imagine my water service be sketchy and going in & out like that. Great tips! :) Also, extremely thankful for my water working this AM!

    Fal @ Waves of Grace [visiting from The Peony Project <3]

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  3. Enjoyed reading your list...especially #7. The hardest thing for me would be having the electricity go out. It has gone out for a few days a couple times in the winter other years (due to ice storms), and since all our heat is run by electricity it is extremely unpleasant. We now have a generator, so hopefully it wouldn't be so bad. In the summer it wouldn't be nearly as much of a problem.

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  4. Internet and water going out also seems to be a thing where we live in Thailand! Though, we frequently had both turned off "for maintenance" when we lived in Canada, so I shouldn't complain. We would fill up big buckets with water so we could flush the toilet and that sort of thing, in preparation. :)

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  5. Between water, internet, and electricity, the hardest thing for me to live without would be water. I went camping for a couple of weeks last summer and the campgrounds we stayed at had outhouses (no running water) and the only 2 sources of water were Lake Superior and the pumps that were scattered miles apart in the campground. I survived, but not super happily. I definitely drove out of town to Walmart a few times just to wash my hands, and even though Lake Superior was filled with ice water, I jumped in the lake. Ha!

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  6. hahaha, #7. I'm sorry about your sporadic water outages! Those definitely aren't fun. I tend to go to the gym to shower when mine is malfunctioning. :x

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  7. Yikes. I was without a toilet for about 2 weeks in France as a student and it was NOT fun. Walking 2 blocks to go to the bathroom is not convenient. Heaven forbid you have to go in the night! LOL (That is what the garden is for...right? ; ) )

    I have never lived without water for more than say, a couple of hours if they are doing work on the water in our area. And that happens once every 10 years, so I can't imagine how hard that must me. It's the little things right?

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  8. This makes me really, really thankful for water!

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  9. The good old days when you had water? Ha. Did you ever think you'd be saying that?

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  10. Good grief! I cannot imagine not having water!!!!
    I thought running out of hot water was a travesty, but none at all? EEK!

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  11. Man, this would be so hard to plan around! Our power went out on Sunday right when we were trying to set up some Christmas decorations. Luckily it was back on in a few hours, but it really made me appreciate having electricity and being able to see in a dark house. After reading your story, I'm going to appreciate both water and electricity more...and maybe go stock up on some gallons of water:)

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  12. I couldn't even imagine having my water go off at random times! Sounds like you have a positive way at looking at the adventure tho!

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  13. Living in China I totally took advantage of having access to clean water all the time. Although it's not a HUGE issue all the time here, it's definitely got me thinking.. what other things have I taken advantage of in the US that I don't have here. Would make for an interesting post...

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  14. Sounds rough! Living in the city I can't imagine not having running water. But a few years ago I spent a couple years living in a little trailer in the mountains and it wasn't uncommon for my pipes to freeze during the winter. I often had to shower at the neighbours' and bring my dishes in a bucket to someone else's so I could wash them! Luckily we all worked together and this was in a staff accommodation-type setting so it's not like I had to do this in strangers' homes ;)

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  15. Yikes!! I can't believe your water goes out! In Indonesia that happens so I try to have a lot of back up water on hand. That is crazy it happens to you though!
    Melanie @ meandmr.com

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  16. Holy cow! So sorry for you guys!
    The water was constantly turned off in my old apartment complex, but it was old and needed many repairs before, during, and after Utah winters. Thankfully, it was always mid-morning to afternoon when Justin was at college and I was teaching.

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  17. I haven't had the water go out at home before... thankfully. Just at work... which was semi-nice because it was a restaurant so we got an unexpected day off!

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  18. Yikes! At least water could (sort of) be prepped for. I'm sad to say I'd be devastated sans the internet.

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  19. We were without water a few times in Rwanda but luckily it was always at convenient times. They are used to it though and often keep jerry cans for the bathrooms and we had a supply of water bottles for task like brushing our teeth. Embarrassingly, I think I would be worse off without internet.

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  20. I've had all of those go out on me before. They're all hard in their own ways. I think water was the hardest because we were lucky enough to be one of the only places with running water, so then you have to go out to the bucket of rain water in the back and use the outhouse out back. Bleh. We didn't have AC or anything so electricity wasn't that big of a deal. Luckily our internet never went out for 5 days, that's a long time!

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  21. Posts like this make me realize how different life in the US is from other places in the world. I literally don't think I have EVER gone more than a few hours without water, electricity, food, or whatever I needed. I do stock up some emergency supplies, but I've never had to use them (so far). Lucky me. But thanks for the tips. I hope I don't have to use them any time soon. #SITSsharefest

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  22. My water's off right now. Earlier this year it was off for most of the day every day for about 2-3 months. It was hellish!

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  23. Oh friend! I can completely relate to this one! I'd have to say water would be the worst to live without. Do you feel that way too?

    Even this morning the water pressure in our bathrooms was pathetic. I had to get a bucket and take a bowl bath. I'm glad I had a hot pot so I could add a pitcher of boiling water to at least make the bowl bath water warm.

    We don't have internet at our place. It is around $150 a month and is slower than dial up. I either come to my friends house or I go to an internet cafe.

    We have only been out of electricity for about 8 hours and it was during the hot day time. It was rough. They said that soon electricity will be on rotation but it hasn't started yet.

    We still have our big blue gallon tank to fill. It's only about 1/3 to 1/2 full so I need to fill that up soon before I regret not having done that sooner.

    Do you all 'pump' water in China too? Here in Myanmar when the electricity is on you have to pump water up to a big basin on top of your house. Then that is your only water supply. If you fail to pump when the electricity is on you might just be out of luck with water. It was all so new to me and still is at times.

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  24. These are some good (and funny tips), although kind of a bummer this seems to happen to you so frequently. Does your building at least give you some notice that it will happen or is it completely random?

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