Sewing doesn’t help

Yesterday was nice. Really nice. A couple of light showers and drizzle for most of the day. A miserable Sunday at any other time or in any other place, but we loved it. The garden was sighing with relief, the rainwater tanks were refilled, and we got at least another 1200 litres into the pool, whose situation had, in all honesty, been looking a little precarious.

It was like someone had pressed a reset button. Wonderful.

But this was small scale, of course. Yesterday won’t have made any meaningful difference to our water crisis. It just made my lawn feel a bit happier. We need real, heavy, prolonged, regular rain to sort out our water problems.

But yesterday was nice. Really nice.

While I’m on the subject of the water crisis (but then actually, when am I ever not?), let me remind you that sewing doesn’t help the situation. Not sewing as in stitching a couple of pieces of fabric together (although that won’t assist us either), but SEWing.

SEW stands for Someone Else’s Water, and SEWing is a new concept that I have noted recently and named, like the Stable Genius™ I can like to be.

Saving water has become, in some circles at least, intensely competitive.

Bring it on, I say.

If my triumphant, vaguely arrogant assertion at a braai that “We’re down to 50 litres a day” somehow spurs you into trying to reduce your daily water usage, then that’s great. Everyone benefits.
But your reduction must be a genuine one, made by saving water in your own home. It’s no use merely SEWing. That doesn’t help anyone.

SEWing is the act of ostensibly saving water, but merely doing so by diverting your actual usage onto someone else’s account. There appear to be many ways to SEW, all of which will lower your household water bill, but won’t help the overall water crisis situation in any way. Handing your washing over to a local laundry. Watering your garden using a hosepipe attached to next door’s tap while they’re away on holiday. Showering at the gym. Washing your car at a local car wash. Saving that big poo for work.

Spoiler alert: Just because that water doesn’t appear on your municipal bill doesn’t mean it isn’t getting used. It’s all coming from the same worryingly empty dams.

Your rates bill may look good, your car may look good, your garden may even look good if (in an entirely hypothetical situation) your neighbour asked you to keep an eye on their property while they went to Europe for Christmas [nervous cough], but it’s a hollow victory.

So if you’re a closet SEWer, you’ve been rumbled. I’m on to you and your despicable, duplicitous, deceitful actions. It’s time to think again. Because you’re not moving Day Zero out by dropping the kids off at the pool at the office.
And your colleagues hate you for it too.

School night rookie error

Last night was great fun. A few friends round for a braai, several (or more) beers and an awful lot of really good wine. There was much merriment, some really well-cooked fillet and everyone had a really good time.

But partying on a school night? Rookie error.

This morning, as perhaps you may already have imagined, was less good. Mild dehydration coupled with a distinct lack of sleep and sprinkled with a topping of new medical waste disposal guidelines and international conference calls at work.

Never party on a school night. Move either the party or the school.
Because it is plainly clear that you really can’t do both. Not at my age.

The consequences of my foolishness are several-fold:

– I’m really rather grumpy and have shouted at the new medical waste guidelines quite a lot because they are rubbish. (In my defence, they were already rubbish before last night’s shenanigans.)
– I have drunk almost all the coffee in Cape Town. And as any fule kno,  that’s a lot of coffee – mainly because of all the huge coffee plantations and associated agriculture just downstream from the Theewaterskloof Dam.
– I’m almost certainly not going to be able to stay up to watch the Magic of the FA Cup 3rd Round this evening. The Tall Accountant tells me that “Liverpool will clobber them” (“them” being Everton). I’ll just have to find out in the morning.
– It’s gone 4pm and I’ve only just remembered that I have to write a blog post today. Even though I have to write a blog post every day.
– I am tired in all eleven official national languages and I still have 3 pages of technical stuff to read, digest, cogitate and forget. Back to it.

Lesson learned.

Until next time.

How bad is the drought?

I meant to blog this when I saw it, but I needed to go to the beach and relax, so I didn’t get around to it. Still, no harm in sharing it now, because even looking back, I think it’s very telling as to the perilous state of our water supply.

We’re now well into fire season and when they are not fighting fires, our local agencies are working overtime on social media, keeping us informed and trying to stop people from starting fires in the first place. Thank you. Keep up the good work.

Here’s a post from the Overberg Fire Protection Association from the 31st December 2017.

Various reports of smoke have been received from 09:00 this morning. We can confirm that no #wildfires have been reported and area confirmed is safe. #Thanku for your vigilance, Overberg District Municipality Fire and Rescue and the #goFPA members that made sure our area is safe. The phone calls to assist with our efforts (mostly made by members from the beach!), the private plane that could give info and worried officials offering assistance!

All of which seems to be good news, but if no fire, then why the smoke? Because we all know that “there’s no smoke without fire“.

Here’s the image (by devfloat) that accompanied the post:

But that’s not smoke. That’s dust, but not just dust from anywhere:

#Overberg #Theewaterskloof area 31/12/17 11:30
No ongoing #wildfires, dust from the Theewaterskloof dam is the cause of concern.

Yes, people thought there was a fire in the area because there was dust blowing around from the local dam. The one that would usually be full of water and supplying it to Cape Town.
Not only is it not full of water and not supplying it to Cape Town, the dam is so dry that its surface is blowing around and making people think the valley is on fire.

I know that this is not “news”, but if anyone out there needs a sign that we are in a seriously dire situation, then this is surely it.

And yet only a third of us are following the city’s recommendations:

We are utterly buggered. And we only have ourselves the other 66% to blame.

2017 Blog Stats

This year, you – dear 6000 miles… reader – have been served a total of 420 posts (an average of 1.15 per day) comprising of an incredible 95,957  words (an average of 228.5 per post) from 4 different countries (an average of 1 every three months, dur!) on this site.
I know – the countries bit seems a bit lame with amongst all those other big numbers – but they were actually often the most exciting bits.

November was (for some reason) my most prolific: 11,337 words in 40 posts. (Only one country though.)
What was I thinking?
Mainly stuff about nurdles, apparently.

Join me then next year, when there will be plenty more letters arranged into generally correct and meaningful order.

Have a safe and enjoyable New Year.

6000 out.

Best line

Overheard, early afternoon in a bottle store the other day.
Afrikaans accent. Obviously.

Ja, I was going to have a dry day today, but then I remembered that I already had a Klippies and Coke for breakfast.

Ah, the wonderful holiday spirit.

Literally.