Todd and I went down to the Little Schuylkill River this morning to fill up 5 gallon buckets and truck them back to our house to water our parched garden. Our well is very shallow and cannot even take multiple clothes washings when it is this dry, let alone water plants. We are lucky compared to the poor farmers who depend on the weather to enable them to make a living. It pains my heart to see the earth so dry, have it burn up, life wither. I stood in the shallows and dipped and filled, Todd hauled to the back of the pick-up. He said to me, “You know, billions of people all over the world have to haul their water every single day.” That was the exact thing I was thinking of, all my comrades all over the world sharing in this exact chore today.
I have been blessed to visit thirty countries on this planet, many of them are developing nations. I have seen African women carry water on their heads in buckets and women in Bhaktapur in Nepal drop plastic jugs on ropes down into wells for their water- this is a DAILY challenge, all days of the year, all their lives. Often it is far away, requiring heavy labor. The task often falls onto the young girls which prevent them from attending school. It is something they just have to do. No one can live without water. The job made me feel connected to all those struggling around the world. This is only one day for me, and even though we moved a half a ton of water, standing in the cool water, it was even fun, and I don’t have to lift weights this evening. And it sure made me feel grateful to live the charmed life that I do. Gratitude is always a good thing to have wash over you. It is easy for that to occur while you are standing in a river up to your knees filling buckets.