Last week I put out a request for help. I asked for advice on living without running water. Although they know how to do it better than the rest of us, I wasn't asking people in the third world. I wanted advice from people that have gone without running water either by choice or similar circumstance. Not surprisingly, most of the responses were from fellow Northland College grads.
The best words of wisdom that came back our way (besides to just drink beer) were from our dear friend Anna. She's an expert at living without indoor plumbing. Her advice: Figure out a system, and put it into action.
This is our system:
1) Fill buckets from the hand-drawn well. We have lots of buckets around the farm, but we bought new (clean) ones for this occasion. What a splurge!
2) Carry buckets into house. Try not to dump water all over the laundry room, kitchen and bathroom floor.
3) Fill back of toilet. Then we can pretend we have indoor plumbing! As a side note, Farmer John has dreams of building/digging an outhouse at the farm. This may be the excuse he needs.
4) Fill a big metal pot and put it on the wood stove. Leave it throughout the night for warm water in the evening and hot water in the morning.We dip small bowls out of this pot for washing hands and face, and pour water out of it to use for washing dishes.
5) Refill clean buckets. Place in bathtub for general water use - cooking, dog water, flushing toilet, etc.
6) We also bought a few other items that aren't normally on the shopping list - jugs of water, baby wipes, dry shampoo and some meals that don't involve a lot of dishes.
We are grateful to our friends and family for their help and support as we deal with this new farm adventure. Although, it really hasn't been too difficult to handle. We wouldn't want to live like this all the time but are managing for now. The well driller called and said he should be able to start by the end of the week, so running water might not be that far away.