Justice: Water

The bathtub didn’t seem to be filling very fast.  It was quite a surprise when Gramps barged in and turned off the water.  He yelled something like “wasting good water” and barged back out again, leaving me to make do with what water was there as it leaked out past the plug I hadn’t put into the drain correctly.  I had some judgmental thoughts
about Gramps that night.

Fast-forward about 50 years, and I realize now that Gramps was downstairs literally listening to his life running down the drain.  He had built the water system himself, up on the hill above the house, and every small drop wasted was a big problem for
him.  I’ve built my own water system, so now I have a better understanding.  I see now that Mother Earth suffers for every wasted drop.  Pumped, filtered, and pumped again, into the house, down the drain, pumped, treated, and pumped again.  Lots of energy, much of it
from fossil fuels, goes into the water I use every day, as well as the water it takes to grow and process the food I eat.  For Gramps, as for me with my home built water system, it was possible for the water to run out, something that almost never happens in Suburbia.

There is a lot at stake when it comes to water usage.  For Gramps, justice was done on that night 50 years ago, and I’m sure he continued to worry about “wasting good water” for many years.  For me, the struggle continues.  I need to conserve- water that goes into
producing my food, making the “stuff” that crowds every corner of my life, and even into washing up.  It’s what’s right for Mother Earth, and thus, for me.

Bill Benshoof

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