“Due to low reservoir elevations in the Stellarton public drinking water supply and the possibility of unsafe water, consumers are advised to boil all water for at least 1 minute before drinking, preparing infant formulas, preparing juices and ice cubes, washing fruits and vegetables, cooking, dental hygiene or any other activity requiring human consumption. This is to be done until further notice.”
It’s Saturday morning. Like other Saturday mornings, I wake to a sink full of Friday night’s dishes. I’m just too tired after all week to get right at the dishes on Friday night… surely I’m not the only one guilty of that? So, I turn on the faucet, and oh shoot…. I forgot, just for a second, that I’m not allowed to use the water for dish washing. I also forgot to boil the water for dishes last evening. Drat. Now I have to boil a pot of water, and wait for it to cool, before I can wash the dishes. Oh well.
I move onto making breakfast. I take out the breakfast sausage, the eggs, and the English muffins and cook it all up for my family, but something is missing. We need some sort of fruit to make this a complete meal. Strawberries, not in season, but I cannot resist them. So I reach into the fridge and haul them out. Again I turn to my faucet. Drat! There is no cooled water for washing produce, and I can’t use the hot water to rinse strawberries. Into the fridge I go to get bottled water (Yes, I know, I’m not supposed to be buying bottled water, but what is a girl to do? The boiled water is all brown and grungy). Now I am using water, which I bought, to wash strawberries, and then throw it down the drain.
Thinking to myself: Boil pot, boil! I swear I’m not watching you! I wonder how much electricity it takes to boil a 20 litre pot of water. I’m going to have to go to Sobeys again tomorrow in search of drinking water. Thank God that Big 8 is right here in town.
Breakfast was good. Now to wash the dishes… I pour some water from the giant pot that has been adorning my stove for the better part of a week. (It’s become a bit of a fixture. I’ve even used it’s shiny sides to check my hair… please don’t judge me). Anyway, back to the dishes, but the water is way too hot. (Why couldn’t I have remembered to boil that water last night?) Do I use more of the water that I bought to cool it off? Do I use ice cubes? Or do I just wait for it to cool off? At least I can be thankful for not owning a dishwasher, that way at least I am already used to having to hand wash my dishes.
How much longer do I have to do this? At least 10 days? And I just paid my quarterly water bill.
With all the electricity I am using boiling water, the dollars spent buying drinking water and the inconvenience of not being able to use the water that I pay the town for, you’d think they would give me a break on my next water bill. After all, it would be the right thing to do, right? Perhaps I should call the Town of Stellarton (752-2114) and ask them if they will consider it.
Well, the dish water is cooled off, guess I should do those dishes, before I have to boil more water to heat it back up.
“The water utility is doing all it can to remedy the situation as quickly as possible. The water utility, Nova Scotia Environment and Labour (www.novascotia.ca/nse/) and the Medical Officer of Health are continuing to monitor the water quality closely and are working in close consultation. Detailed instructions on water usage when boil water advisory is in effect are available from the water utility or the local office of Nova Scotia Environment. For further information regarding this notice call 752-2946.”
Marlene Wells is a born and bred political junky, wife and mother who calls Pictou County home. Follow Marlene on Twitter: MarleneWells