Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Bottled Water

In Dakar I was told not to drink the tap water: drink bottled water! But then I felt bad eating at peoples' houses and implying that their water was unclean (however understanding they were), or even eating at a restaurant and not being able drink the ice cold water they brought. So I started drinking a little tap water at a time -- and had no problems. Then I drank as much tap water as I wanted. Since I'm irrational, I continued to buy bottled water to have in my room, but when out and about I drank tap water. Sure the tap water had a slight and unpleasant undertaste, but you can't beat fitting in.

When I would finish a six pack of water, I would throw the six bottles out in the little metal bins that line residential streets of Dakar. Within fifteen minutes the bottles would be gone: someone had taken them to be used. Or if I was walking somewhere and had finished a bottle of water (or even if I hadn't) I would field many requests for the bottle. Empty water bottles aren't immediately landfill in Dakar even if you make no effort to recycle.

Inspired by Henry.

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