A good day starts with the sound of running water filling my toilet tank. The sputtering faucet as the rushing water pushes out all the air sitting in the pipes can be quite startling at first, but as you come to realize that the sound of water reclaiming control over the plumbing means that you will have water that morning, it becomes almost soothing.
In Vau Dejes, they turn the water on for us three times a day during meal times. Normally, it will stay on for two to three hours but that varies along with water pressure. Living on a water schedule here is hardly a problem. I have a bucket of water in my bathroom to flush the toilet throughout the day. Under my sink I keep three two liter bottles filled with water to wash dishes and cook. In the bathroom, I keep a shower water bottle with holes poked in the cap so I can shower after Judo if there isn’t water. And to top it all off I have a 4 gallon water filter that serves as a general reservoir for my apt. Most of the time I don’t even have to tap my reserves because I have water when I want it.
The reason we are on a water schedule is lack of infrastructure and inability to meet demand. The water supply network in Vau Dejes was built in 1967 and reconstructed in 2000. The water system only supplies water to the city of Vau Dejes while the rest of the municipality relies on private wells. There is also uncertainty as to the quality of water. It is my understanding that there might be a lot of minerals in the water and there is also a question of contamination from sewage water.
Keshtu eshte jeta ne Vau Dejes! It really isn’t that bad and now that I have adapted to living on a water schedule I hardly feel inconvenienced by it. There are other parts of the world if far less access to usable water than what we have in Albania. For more information on the world’s water supply check out http://www.unwater.org