Friday, December 23, 2011

Daisy of the Flinthills: No Water!

This is the place where I am developing childrens stories about living in the Flint Hills of Kansas in the 1980's.  Original stories by Kitty Frank.  

My blogging on things like upcycling my wool coat has been copied over to www.flinthillskittykitty.com 

No Water!

Daddy loves our house in the country.  He thinks it is fine that our house doesn't have rural water the same as everyone else.

Every week, he drives to town and buys one thousand gallons of water with a roll of quarters.  Sometimes my brother and I ride with him in the big two-ton truck.  The truck is the same age as my daddy.......and that is old!

When we get home, Daddy backs the truck up to the cistern and opens the valve to let the water spash out.  It goes down into our cistern.  A cistern is a hole in the ground made of concrete.  Ours is right next to our basement.  It will hold four thousand gallons of water but the truck can only carry one thousand gallons on each trip.  Water is very heavy.

Sometimes the roads are slick with ice and snow.  The big truck is too dangerous to drive with such a heavy load.  We are careful not to waste water during the winter!

Water is important at our house.  When we brush our teeth, we turn off the water until we are ready to rinse. 

I can run my own bath water and I know exactly how much to put in the tub so I don't waste any.

Everyone in my family listens for running water.  We check if we hear water running too long to make sure someone is using it.  When Grandma comes to visit, sometimes she leaves the water running in the sink while she cooks.  My brother and I climb up on a chair and help her turn it off and on when she needs it.

Daddy sings, "If its yellow, let it mellow.  It it's brown, flush is down."  But Momma says that is not our rule.  Our rule is to flush every time!

Sometimes Daddy works overtime at his job.  It is dark when he gets home.  He can't drive the two-ton truck to get more water in the dark because the headlights are not very good.  Momma tries to make our water last longer by taking our dirty clothes to town to wash them at the laundry mat.  We help!

One day we were getting ready to go to a party.  My brother and I wrapped a gift for the new baby we were going to meet.  Then we went outside to play while Momma got ready.

Momma was in the shower when the water pipes made loud, growling noises.  At our house, that means "Quick, the water tank is almost empty!".  Momma hurried to rinse the shampoo out of her hair with the last drops of water from the pipes.

She got dressed and came outside to tell us it was time to go.

Uh oh!  We were sort of dirty.  We were playing with Daisy and the kittens and forgot about the party.

Momma was upset.  Now we would just have to stay home.  There was no more water until Daddy could take the big truck to town to buy more.

Then I said, "What about the swimming pool?"

"Great idea!", Momma said.  "Hurry, both of you get ready to jump in.  I will bring some towels and soap."

The water in the swimming pool was nice and warm from the sun.  There was just enought water in our little pool for us to scrub and rinse off with our beach buckets.  Momma wrapped us in clean towels.  We ran inside to get dressed.  It was time to leave!

Daddy came home.  He laughed when he saw us running into the house in our towels.  He said, "Those are my kids!  I am so proud of you!  Who needs a bathtub anyway?"

"I'll go get more water now.  You will have water when you get back from the party.  Have fun!"

And we did!

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