We have entered stage 4, critical water shortage conditions. There are only 5 stages in the system and stage 5 is titled “emergency”. I only use the water to wash clothes once a week, water the animals and myself in terms of consumption to stave off dehydration, and water the fruit trees between 8 pm and midnight. Technically though, im supposed to be doing that 1 day a week and im watering the 8 fruit trees nightly. I give each tree one pitcher of well water. If you are on city water you can get fined for doing this. I dont think they can fine me for using my own well water but if im being considerate, i share the aquifer with all the other wells and i shouldnt do anything that would deplete the water for all our wells. I do keep this in mind and i am generally very guarded and stingy with my well water. However, i planted those fruit trees. I painstakingly dug those holes through rock to make room for them to grow. I kept them wrapped in blankets and duct tape in the winter and tried to keep them hydrated in the summers. You cant replace trees that have survived a few winters with brand new ones and expect not to be starting back at square one. The young trees die when it freezes. So, im trying to keep these trees alive. It seems a morbid thought to water them once a week only because then they’d die. All the landscaping trees in fredericksburg that arent 100 yrs old are brown. All the trees lining the dry creeks and riverbeds are brown. I dont want my fruit trees to be brown. It is an extra 8 pitchers of hand carried water. God will have to forgive me because i dont have it in me to purposefully kill the fruit trees. It has been 4 years since we had an amount of rain to add back to the ground. We have a pop up storm here or there but it evaporates quickly. We need a series of good soaking rains. If the water level in the ground drops below the depth my well is drilled to, no more water. None of us have money to drill another well or deepen the one we have. A peer whose well ran dry is looking at $40,000 to deepen hers. I shudder at the thought. I dont have that amount of money and i couldnt borrow it either because i owe so much in medical bills, a water softener, and the mortgage. If i said i wasnt worried every time i turned the knob on the spigot outside i’d be lying. Im watching wells run dry all around me and i know that one day it will be my turn.
We need rain. We need biblical amounts of rain. We need 40 days of rain. We need blinding torrents of rain. God hear my prayer and if it be your will, give Texas some rain. Lord, bring us outstanding amounts of rain. Fill the creeks again Lord. We are praying and waiting on your beautiful, hydrating rain. Something has got to change soon or we’ll all be up sh*t creek with bone dry wells and dead trees.
update: the emergency management system for our county has appealed to facebook in attempts to find a tanker and sources where they can procure water for those that are without it due to the drought. People are understandably alarmed as facebook is a social media site and it would seem a rather non official last resort for protocol. They’ve devolved into fighting each other over whose fault the lack of water is, who used the most and for what…and in the meantime few are even having the conversation about tankers anymore. One man threw a comment in there that in the next two months the only forecasted day of rain is a single tuesday and we all needed to pray that it happened. Sir, if it rained from sun up to sun down, a single tuesday could not help us. We need a biblical event.
Though it is tacky and petty for me to use this opportunity to point out yet another reason why the development of this area is a bad idea, as i am obviously biased and just want the bulldozers to go away and leave the acres and acres of wooded land alone…. I’d just like someone to explain to the developers that if we don’t have water now, we’re going to have less of it after they build four new subdivisions.