Wednesday, 18 March 2009


Tonight it rained. For the first time since the beginning of October.

Drought has been affecting 2 significant areas of life here. The first is power which we have already mentioned in our blog recently. The second is of course water supply.

Water supply is always a bit hit and miss here even in the middle of monsoon. If you have any significant number of people living on your property you probably don't get enough through the main city water line, unless you pay the right minister a bribe, or live near someone paying a nice bribe.

For most people water only comes down the line for a short period of time each day and you have to pump the water from the main line into the property. Of course with only having 8 hours of power a day the chances of the water coming past on the main line coinciding with when you have power are significantly reduced.

We have friends who live in properties that are so short on water they haven't been able to shower for over a week, or wash their clothes for a few weeks.

You can order in tankers that bring water from streams outside Kathmandu, however their is now only one stream in the valley that still has enough water to supply these tankers. So no new orders are being taken, and current orders are having to be reduced. School usually has 4 or 5 tanker visits a week and is now down to half that, which when we have 200 people using the site daily poses problems for flushing toilets and washing hands. So far we've been okay but it has the potential...

So this is why everyone here is so pleased it rained tonight. Not that one evening shower solves all the problems of course, but it does mean that the season for rain is coming and the situation will hopefully improve. Until this time next year.

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