The Source of Our Water
by Pamela Parsa, Mbomo, Gabon
My water for household use—cooking, drinking, bathing, and washing dishes—comes from a pump. When it rains, I try to catch the water in a bucket. This water is clear and, as far as I can tell, almost fit for drinking. Of course, first I boil and filter my water before drinking it. It tastes great!
I wash clothes in a river-fed stream, located 10 minutes from my house. One other locale for washing clothes is a manmade pond in a swampy region. This water is much less clear than the stream water. I rarely use it, since I saw some kids cleaning wild-animal entrails (guts) there while I was washing clothes.
Water is not difficult to find here. The main problem is carrying it back home. Luckily, I live fairly close to the pump. Often, I see children carrying a bucket on their head plus two buckets of water in each hand. There is one village 12 km away that has no pump, and the closest water source is a stream located on a very steep hill.