Travel, Food, and Slices of Life

Crisis Brewing


Throughout our trip to India I heard again and again about the shortage of water. We were told not to drink the tap water even in the Western hotels.  The water was safe, we were told, but the pipes were decaying and the water contained all kinds of “minerals” that would be unhealthy. In other words, the infrastructure of even the modernized areas of the large cities is getting old.

Water cisterns on top of buildings get regular deliveries of trucked in water.rooftop water The city of Fatephur Sikri where the new center of government had to be abandoned after only ten years because of the lack of water gets its water trucked in.DSCF6281 Water tables are falling, making farming resort back to dry methods; the Green Revolution was not the answer to feed the nation because of the lack of available water.DSCF6547

Election-2014-Card-6Meanwhile, the elections for the new government are now over and we wait for the count.  The nation is clamoring for a change, hoping replacing the longtime Ghandi leadership will result in wonderful improvements.

obama chnageI think back to our own experience when Barack Obama offered the concept of change and won handily.  We were all so hopeful, and look what has been happening here in our own country over the past six years. We seem to be more divisive, more argumentative, more angry over everything.

There was a sense of calm in India. It could be as a short time visitor I was insulated and did not truly understand any unrest I may have witnessed, but I got the impression that the religious practices there give the people a feeling about life that is different than what we have. With the Hindu and Buddhist concepts of reincarnation, there is a surety that this lifetime is only one of many.  Perhaps this provides a sense of calm facing what we would consider considerable frustration.Unity-in-Diversity

My visit to the Muslim family in Agra also provided some insight.  As we left and headed back to the market area I asked our guides where that family was in the spectrum of lower and middle class. For sure it would be poverty here in the US. He said it was lower middle class. I’ve reconsidered all I saw in their home that day. Despite the lack of personal space, no television or computer or other toys typically found in our homes, the tiny kitchen space, they appeared to be clean, well fed and all had places to sleep.  The fact that an extended family was living together in what we would consider a small space is a cultural difference not really related to economic status.DSCF6148

We Americans are used to so much more. Out attachment to television and movies shows us products and lifestyles of the rich and famous, causing us to want more, to expect more, to demand more.  We want what we want and we want it now. Deferred gratification is something that has been forgotten.

DSCF6072Perhaps the Indians know better that to acquire more they must work. Because they do work. Oh sure, we saw some people with their hands out. But we saw more, many many more people hawking their wares. Annoying bunch of people. But they were working. So were the people who were sweeping the pavement. The people cutting the grass. All the many many people doing what we consider menial labor so they could earn a living.

So, I started writing this blog thinking that if the new Indian government does not make some improvements there will be trouble. Particularly, I am concerned about water shortages in India.

But now, as I wind this short essay down, I am more concerned about us here in the US. We have so much and we do not know how to live with less. And yet, that day is coming. We all feel it.


Author: GoingPlaces Can-Do Zero Waste

I moved to McMinnville a few years ago and was impressed with its friendliness and the beauty of the surrounding countryside. I write several blogs. GoingPlacesLivingLife is my personal blog related to travel, food and just general thoughts. Can-Do Real Food tells about my business processing local produce from small farms and preserving it by canning and dehydrating. The concept of Zero Waste appeals to me because we can truly reduce what gets tossed into the landfill with very small changes in our lifestyle. Join us.

8 thoughts on “Crisis Brewing

  1. As I read about india’s water shortages, i can’t help thinkig of the millions of gallons of water that we permanently destroy in the country to frack – for the sake of fuel. While California’s crops are dramatically diminished by 3 years of drought – we pollute what we need to live.
    Like my friend Charlie Sullivan Says: “…You can’t drink money”

    If you read the last global water study – you’ll see that it’s the same everywhere on earth.
    We are a bunch of idiots with no chance of survival – if we are willin o stand by and – without as much as a peep out of most people, destroy our natural resources – the end is clear.

    thanks for writing this Beth!

    • You know, some of us knew this effort to get more oil out of the ground was not as easy and low impact as they sold it. But property owners liked the lease income. Even in West Virginia where there has already had plenty of experience of the land being raped, people are greedy for the buck now and the future be damned. And here we are, horrible pollution and toxic spills everywhere. And the people will just expect someone to fix it all and continue getting angry and hateful and dependent.

  2. Yup. Well said. Getting more conservative as I age though still kneejerk liberal. But I started working at 13 and am still working in retirement. Yes doing things now I like and by choice. But many decades of putting up with crap to pay mortgage etc.

    Keep these coming.

    Take good care – iPhone Helen

    • Thinking how to downsize is difficult. Thinking how to cover a college education is scary. Making choices and plans to get there are necessary. People who just float through life expecting wonderful things to happen but having to no plan how to achieve that dream are not based in reality.

  3. I’ve felt it coming for some time already. We can’t simply keep squandering finite resources without repercussions.

    • I firmly believe we are in for a bad time ahead as the climate change forces itself into the awareness of people who are not preparing. All these people who have purchased guns will be ready to protect their castle and I suppose there will be quite a lot of deaths over shortages here, instead of learning to live without.

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