We arrived in Western Ethiopia, only to find that the housing arrangements we had made were no longer an option. We quickly had to find housing in a town overflowing with NGO workers.
There was only one option. We booked the rooms and started moving in. We quickly found several disappointments in the rooms, but the biggest one was that the water wasn’t working. Now, we are professionals at living without plumbing. But in Nasir, we have this beautiful thing called a water well.
Day one, the water we were brought looked clean. We bathed with it and began filtering it for drinking water.
Day two, the water we were brought was brown. Very, very brown.
The water had come from the river. The river that hundreds of people bathe in daily. Cars are washed in it, and occasionally you’ll see a herd of cattle bathing in it. And I’m sure you can imagine all of the other lovely things one would find in such a busy body of water.
What were we to do? It is the dry season here and water supplies are running low. “It should rain in a few days,” the staff at the guest house told us. So we braced ourselves and went a few days without bathing.
By God's grace, it did in fact rain.
During that interim period we purchased bottled water to do the daily necessities like brushing teeth and, of course, staying hydrated in 110 degree weather. But what about everyone else? In a place where bottled water costs more money than coca cola, we were fortunate. Not everyone here is as fortunate as we are.
We rarely get to see such a vivid picture of life without clean water. But this week, we did.
We appreciate more the work of Every Village and other organizations that work to bring clean water to people. Lives are saved because of it. Lives are saved over something I have taken for granted.
If you are the person who helps raise money for water wells, or if you are the person writing the check, thank you! We are so grateful for those that sacrifice to give the gift of water.