You don’t really know how stuffed it is, until it’s really stuffed

The water appeared on the floor a week or so ago, but wasn’t noticed because, well, it’s the bathroom floor. But it got worse this weekend, so something had to be done. The toilet was leaking. The clean water going in before you dry wretch. So mm went and bought some tools which fixed the initial problem, but vigorous jiggling to fix it meant another part got dislodged. We sought instructional help (via Youtube – officially my favourite site for all kinds of fixit things) which sent mm off to Bunnings yesterday to get a nifty flexy tube (advised by instructional YouTube video), which fixed one problem, but highlighted another. We need another tool to tighten some widget we never knew existed. Anyhow, that will get done later – but it has left us with an “unflushable” toilet. No fear, we have got resourceful and use a bucket as our primitive flush-device. 

Filling said bucket though has bought into stark relief how much water goes into flushing a toilet. It’s not a small amount – it’s a pretty full bucket. Now I know we all have half flush solutions, but living in a unit that we assume doesn’t have grey water, means an obscene amount of water is literally being flushed down the toilet every year. And not just any water. Pure, drinking water. 

So two things are made even more obvoius to me as I tip buckets down the loo.

a) a big chunk of our state is still in drought. While we have had some nice rain the last few months, our dams are not full, and we have to really start treating water like it’s precious (like oil…). Flushing fresh, drinking water down toilets (and watering gardens or washing cars) is an obscene waste.

b) there are places in the world that can’t get fresh water to DRINK, let alone water to keep their crops alive and as a result children die becasue of preventable diseases.

So what are we doing? Well, we are using a bucket in the shower to collect the water to use in the toilet (and we will probably keep doing this even when the pipe stops leaking, especially as it’s made us see how much water is wasted every shower as well!).  And I am definitely suggesting tomorrow at work we follow the tenants of – and combine points 5 and 8; ditch the shitty secret santa and pool our cash to give a community a toilet. And it only costs $168! Much less probably than the amount we will pay to fix our dodgy leak.


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