Feeling the warm water cascade through my long flowing hair and down my naked torso, washing away the sweat and dirt from the day’s activities. Well that is the opposite experience of shower time here at Malaikha. It starts with one of us remembering to start a fire some 400m from our dwelling and putting a large on of water on the fire, walking back to our dwelling and fetching the plastic bucket (more on the bucket in another post), walking 50m and using the hand pump to half fill the plastic bucket, it takes about 10 mins of vigorous pumping in the baking heat.
Now the fun part begins, I carry the bucket on my head down a pathway for 400m to the shower room. Sharki3 takes the obligatory photo of the “white man” with a bucket of water on his bald head stumbling along in the African sun. My record so far is 2 spills down my arm, well with the undulating pathways, dodging the donkeys, stepping over the dogs and cats and not squashing chickens or being pecked by a hen, it’s not a bad record so far. The blind kids never spill a drop mind you! If you leave the bucket on the floor outside the shower for too long you are sure to find a hen bathing when you return, so speed is of the essence.
Now we can fill the bucket inside the shower room with the piping hot water just boiled. Voila, upside down shower in a cramped barely lit cubicle with a wash cloth, bucket, soap and headlight hanging from the tap. Oh did I forget to mention there are taps and pipes but no running water.
Shower finished and out of the bucket I step into Oops I forgot to bring my flip flops, so into my dirty sandals not gonna start again!