Drinking Water Africa Djougou Benin West Africa Sunday, September 24, 2006
I sometime finally understand the story behind the story as CNN likes to say. Water, there is no choice, I need to drink water, I on the other hand will drink about any water, I do not see water as extremely dangerous, walking on the street yes, being hit by car, drinking water no.
Fear is an interesting and pushy salesperson. It creates the fear, paranoia and obsession, fear, or maybe lack of faith. I have faith I am ok, I know I am ok, life is good, and if I die, then I die. I am not obsessed with living; I am obsessed with living my life as I want, where I want and in the world, not away from the world.
Water, AIDS, Black People, Toilets, Military Leaders, Corruption, No Roads, these are some fears of Africa, I know of, I am sure there is many more. I would be most worried about the cost, however anyone that can afford to go to Europe, can for one-half the price go to Africa it seems. Backpacking Europe is expensive and then the drinking, the amount of money spent on drinking and a person can live here.
Fear or water, I keep remembering this Dutch Girl in Apam, Ghana, we went to dinner, she asked, - Do you want to clean you hand? -
She had or was carrying a small bottle of some handy dandy clean your hands anywhere stuff. I said, - No. -
Later, my fear was, she thinks of me as a dirty person, I eat and do not clean my hands. I did not stutter on the question, I just considered it a little over the edge to clean my hands with some liquid from a bottle.
These small bottles, small references, small specific clues are the story behind the story often, how another person lives is the mystery, and to discover the fears a person I hiding is difficult. She was enchanted with the idea of living primitive, however obsessed with clean. That is like trying to kiss a girl that hates you, primitive become increasing difficult to be clean.
I was observing in Bassila the other day, the local people were sweeping the dirty while it was raining. They was cleaning a very moist, wet part of dirty of debris. I rather thought it hopeless; however, they were plowing away, pushing the world to cleaner.
The time required waking, preparing some water, finding the wood, light the fire, cook the morning meal, to prepare to live in primitive cultures could take until noon. Then here it is siesta time, there is no time to work. The time that is not used in the preparation of daily life is spent in the sales of products. The actual production of products seems to be about 10-20 percent of the time spent trying to live. Under production of moneymaking. The story though more correctly would be they are all selling the same thing and it has no value in the first place. Pimas or Peppers are sold everywhere, anybody has them, everybody has them, yet they are selling them, it like an Eskimo selling the proverbial snow, why would a person sell Pimas when everyone sells Pima. It is because that is all they have to sell, that is all the produce extra of; they produce very small amounts of anything of value. The time spent collecting firewood is amazing, all the time to cook food, yet the amount of food created is minimal.
Photographs, it is easy to take a photograph of someone carrying wood, to seem them working in the fields is difficult. Sitting around is the easiest of all things to photograph. I find people sitting in cluster anywhere, however working in clusters is not common. Working inside a gossip market, full of other people to talk is common, but the lone ranger out plowing away in the field is somewhat rare.
Henny Penny was a story about growing, working, doing everything so in the end a person could eat. There is short amount of time needed to plant the crops, it cannot take forever, and there are windows. The planting season, then the harvest season, in this period maybe everyone is carrying the products, and working.
Note: The Islamic morning prayers have been wailing away for about an hour, it is like a competition between young children for their mother’s attention. I loved to listen to the morning prayers in Pak Bara, Thailand was a wonderful music. Here it is a completion, not a fun noise, I have not see persons rushing in mass to prayer, they may be working overtime to keep them coming to church, mosque, or whatnot, they may just continue to sleep.
I had a business; it is very easy to think you are working all morning and to discover you spent four hours doing some spin dance, a whirling dervish of sorts, a spinning away, however nothing done. If feels like you worked, and I did work, but I did not make money.
I make money with a WebPages by making titles to the WebPages; therefore, I made the money by the title, - Drinking Water Africa - After this, I must mention it a few times, and then talk about related subjects to drinking water. I am on many subject here, it is not good. However, I should be typing about drinking water, I suppose I am preoccupied with the time spent by people in non-income producing work; they spend less than 10 percent of their time making the money.
Every new title, makes google.com a term, a search is created, I enter the competition to be a page someone reads, if the read my page, I have a change of them clicking on something and I earn money. The money is made in starting, when I make a title, the work is done. I will complete the paragraph. Short paragraphs or short blogs make more money because it takes less time.
I am sure the story behind the story is many people are afraid of Africa, they are afraid of dying, of catching some water related, food related, something and dying, nobody loving them, they die. The solution then it to somehow teach a person how to feel safe, it water is their fear. They must be convinced they can always drink safe water in Africa. I think it is totally possible to drink safe water in West Africa, in fact I would say a person has a 100 percent possibility of doing so, however, it is not as simple as just buying bottled water.
Weight, water weighs more than anyone is strong enough to carry; I do not see many backpackers wanting to carry around five liter bottles of water. I can easily carry five bottles of water, I would not walk, I would always have a taxi or motorbike, and I would hand the super heavy bag to the boy, hope he did not fall over and proceed. I do not walk with my backpack, I do many things to avoid walking with 40 kilos or about 85 pound of weight, and I think I am getting close to 100 pounds, and then cans of peas and corn, spaghetti, rice, tomato sauce are heavy. Food is heavy, water is even heavier.
I guess a person could travel with about three to five liter bottles of water, the person would have enough until the re-stocked. If they only traveled in the mornings, found a hotel by noon, they would be back to sources of water and could if needed purify water for them to drink. It is the travel jump that is the problem, moving causes a person to not have good water, I can always have good water in a motel in the city, I go buy, I take to my room, it sits. If I walk, I could carry two liters of water and be prepared. That is a lot of weight, I do not carry two liters of water, and however I could. I would like to say that one of them camel back water bags would be a good solution, however I think a person could never clean the thing. Clean is the solution, not refilling a bladder with water, how to clean the containers, this is the million dollars problem. I also do not know what would make a person feel safe. I do not feel safe buying water in bottles; I have drunk too many bottle of water that tasted like the toilet. I do not trust the factories that bottle water. I trust them to bring it up to half the distance, good enough to make me ready to make best if I wanted. I would only trust water I have boiled, or close to boiling. But then I need to put into a bottle that has been immersed in boiling water, this is the problem, I do not think people will work that hard to have clean water.
I just went and read the encyclopedia Encarta, not much information; however, I remembered I had downloaded a few military survival type manuals. I found one on water, extremely over the top for most person, however a wealth of information. I also had another from person who collected a lot of information. There are three parts to cleaning water, first is filtering out particles, then in making safe, then storage. Storage is the problem for me; I do not see a problem with getting water up to about 98 percent safe. I actually think straining water though a couple of socks, then bringing to a rolling boil will make it safe enough. The problem is the containers; pots of food, cooking, and foods are hotbeds of problems. How to sterilize the water containers and store the one-gallon or more drinking water needed per day, this is the problem. I think I know a drudgery working way; however, it would be time consuming.
I think it better to allow the imagined safety of buying bottled water to persist… Hehehe, there is many illusions that allow people to travel; one is that bottled water is safe.
I will obsess on something about water, I know the problem is not cleaning, the problem is weight, how to make small and portable and something a person will carry.