Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Waterwise class 101

So, about three weeks ago I wrote a post regarding long showers. A few days later, coincidentally, we received our little Target 155 pack. Did you get yours (if you live in Victoria)? And I'm wondering if other states have already received similar things. I know that, at least at the holiday apartments interstate where we've stayed in recent years, there are proper printed shower sticky labels on the shower screen advising to switch water off when brushing teeth and even one that requested turning the shower taps off while shampooing.

It gave me an idea. I would see how I went doing it at home, every time I showered, and not just when I was on holiday. And I know we live in changeable Melbourne, where it's often 35ºC one day, 13ºC the next. But I've been using the technique for several weeks now. The photo above shows how much time I have consistently had left in the timer - well under four minutes - by switching the water off for each shampoo lather. And this includes time taken to rinse around the shower screens and tiles with the shower head (we installed a groovy water efficient shower head attached to a handy hose earlier this year after we moved in and discovered they still had the old water-wasting style shower roses here). I am excited to think that I've managed to wash my hair (and myself) very thoroughly, unhurried, and saved so much water.

Save even more water by cutting your shower time from 7 to 4 minutes and save 42 litres every shower.

I don't know about you, but I do actually find it difficult to shampoo and condition my hair all in under four minutes, consistently, if I leave the water running. When I don't wash my hair (every second day), no problemo! I can be out in no time, I don't dilly-dally (my idea of treating myself or having luxurious time alone does not involve standing). But I was curious as to exactly how long it was taking me to shower, really, as measured by the water authority/city/my community. When we received our little 4 minute shower timer in the post, I was interested to note that I thought 'Well, the government isn't concerned about how I cut my shower forever to four minutes, just that I do."

It got me thinking about the attitude of so many that say silently to themselves, 'There'll be plenty enough people doing it, no one will notice if I don't contribute. It's just me, I'm just one person, I won't make a difference with my seven, eight, ten, twenty minute showers.' Not long ago, that too is what I would privately think to myself.

I imagined how many people actually still thought they were just one person and wouldn't, alone, be noticed if they consciously made an effort to help our water crisis. And while they continue to believe they can't possibly make a difference, we will continue to have rising (boom-tish) water problems.

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