Oh no, water trouble…

This morning, with another sunny day upon us, I took this photo of the various boats available for resort guests to use. They were moved near our veranda over the weekend to make room further down the beach for a wedding.

Late afternoon on Easter Sunday, a notice was delivered to our villa that there were issues with the water supply in Placencia.  The letter asked that we use as little water as possible stating the water wasn’t fit for consumption until further notice.

Oh no!  Not again!  Luckily, we could flush and shower!  That’s a huge relief. 

It was no fault of our resort, we were sympathetic to the difficulty this presented to the staff at LaruBeya with a full house over the busy spring break/Easter week. They dropped off one liter of bottled water to get us through. Last night we received two more liters. Rationing.

Three liters in two days. We usually consume two liters each, per day. It takes over one liter to fill the coffee pot with an equal amount for my tea. As of this morning, there still was no word as to the water being fit for consumption. Soon, we’ll head to the office to check on the availability of more bottled water and ask when the water would be potable. 

Easter is celebrated over a period of five days in Belize.  That time was yet to end, surely having an effect on the water service to the area running properly.

Oddly, we had three water experiences in the four months since we left the US on January 3, 2013:

1.  January 3, 2013, Celebrity Century:  The afternoon we boarded the ship, our cabin toilet overflowed pouring gallons of water all over the tiny bathroom floor Luckily, the rim in the doorway prevented the water from flowing into our cabin.  The toilet wouldn’t flush.  Maintenance was quick to respond making the repair.  With a weak sounding flush we were tentative about the toilet during the entire 15 day cruise as it “acted up” from time to time, no fault of ours.  Later, we heard about toilet issues on the news regarding the two Carnival cruises with sewage running down the hallways.  One week from today we’ll board the Carnival Liberty with a bit of trepidation, rightfully so.
2.  January 29, 2013:  the little beach house water issues (again a result of local water issues) resulting in our moving one week later to LaruBeya.
3.  March 31, 2013, Easter Sunday:  Toilet works (yeah!), shower works (don’t swallow the water) and don’t drink the water for two or more days, yet to be determined.

Without wheels, we can hardly go to a store to purchase water. Plus, we don’t want to pay as much as $20 plus a tip for a cab when at any moment, it could become safe to drink again. The two-mile walk in the heat to and from Seine Bight to buy water would be difficult while carrying jugs of water. We’re not that fit! We don’t want to ask for more water since we aren’t the only guests here. 

Not soda drinkers and now out of our Crystal Lite iced tea (no water to make it), I have yet to make my hot tea today, a morning ritual after downing my usual single cup of coffee. 

Using a touch of our remaining bottled water this morning to brush our teeth, rinse our toothbrushes, and take our vitamins, we used the balance to make a short pot of coffee.  At least the toilet flushes, we can shower and wash our hands.

This is our fate. The familiar taken-for-granted utilities of everyday life in the US are gone.  Last week, the electricity was out twice, each time for more than a few hours, again affecting the entire Placencia peninsula. The resort’s generators were fired up a few hours later until the service resumed, later in the day.

The cable TV goes out several times each day. Every Sunday morning for years, we’ve made an effort to be up and dressed in order to watch Tom’s favorite show, Sunday Morning. This Sunday the cable was out until the last 30 minutes of the show. In Africa, we won’t have any US shows, only reruns of such shows as the Flying Nun, I Love Lucy, and Hollywood Squares.  We’ll adapt.  

As I was writing this, as Tom was taking out the garbage, Rene the concerned and conscientious general manager, handed Tom four liters of water.   Earlier, I had gone to the office to gently request more, if it was available.  Elated, we’re satisfied that this will get us through today. 

Yesterday, I packed most of my clothes from the drawers and the closet.  Today, I’ll pack Tom’s clothes.  Our bags to be shipped to my sister in LA will be completely packed by Friday.  Tom suggested I include all of my high heeled shoes placing them into the bags-to-go.  They take up too much space anyway Perhaps, I’m getting too old for high heeled shoes. 

I’ll keep two pairs of heels, one black, one to match my fancy dress for formal nights on the various cruises.  I’ll keep my water shoes, boots for Africa, workout shoes, multiple pairs of comfy sandals, and white leather Keds, leaving a total of eight pairs to keep. (Remember, we don’t have a home to go back to repack for the next leg of our trip. That which we have with us).

Today, I feel a little anxious. I promised myself I wouldn’t do this. But, old habits, die hard. Tom’s anxious too.  I can tell. He’s worried about our zillion pieces of luggage getting on the tender, out to the ship. I reassure him that soon, we’ll be much lighter. I chose not to worry about that part.   

Instead, my thoughts again swirl around the scary four-hour drive on the Hummingbird Highway. The van’s AC doesn’t reach the back seat and the windows don’t open. I was wrought with fear each time the driver passed a car on the narrow two-lane highway with poor visibility as he maneuvered the winding mountainous roads. The heat, the high-speed drive, the lack of airflow, the bouncy ride in the older van is the part I don’t like. It was a “white knuckle” drive for almost the entire four hours. I didn’t complain. I won’t complain this time either.

I’m running out of contact lens solution, placing a few drops as possible in each space in the case at night.  Unable to wash the case these past few days due to the potential for bacteria in the water, I’ve used bottled water placing the case in a mug in the microwave until boiling, letting it soak for a few hours.

The remaining solution must last until we get on the ship in seven days.  Surely, they’ll have a pricey little bottle I’ll happily buy, enough to last until April 13th, the day we arrive in Miami when we can restock at our planned trip to a nearby Walgreen or CVS pharmacy.

Challenges? Yes. In the realm of life itself, these events are insignificant and meaningless, especially when one looks back at a later time. Very small. But for now, we’ll allow ourselves a little worry and apprehension. Life is filled with a constant flow of inconveniences, annoyances, and apprehension. 

Having left our old lives behind for this year’s long journey surely doesn’t make us exempt from any of the trivialities of daily life.  In reality, we have upped our exposure with the vast opportunities for the “unknown” wherever we may travel.

The sense of relief at the other end is often comparable to making up with a loved one after a horrible disagreement. Its tender, its sweet and one appreciates having survived.  

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