When I was younger, going up to my grandparents cabin was always great. My sister and I could essentially run wild and free. Okay, I was never the wild one, but moving on, there were only a few rules: no running on the dock, don’t get lost in the woods and taking a “cabin shower” or bathing in the lake were the only options for getting clean. I was never about to take a bath in the lake, on account of the fish pee…and weeds; lotsa weeds. You could barely get me out of my inner tube.
My Grandpa Cone’s maximum shower length was two minutes for males and three minutes for the ladies. As a kid I thought this was impossible! How could I possibly get clean and wash my hair that fast?
Fast-forward 25 years, it’s 2009. Chris and I visited the Science Museum of Minnesota this weekend to check out the new Omni Theater movie, “Grand Canyon Adventure” and the special exhibit, “Water.” I have been looking forward to this for a couple of months, you see H2O happens to be my favorite chemical compound, I know quite a lot about it’s chemical properties and not so much about its use around the globe. At the exhibit I learned more about water than I ever thought possible and I encourage everyone to check it out. To summarize briefly what I learned at the SMM: if we don’t make some drastic changes we will run out of water. To a Minnesotan it may sound unrealistic, especially since we live in the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” However, last year in Atlanta, Georgia water was running out, a dental office there installed an outhouse to help conserve resources.
In our city, a request has been made by local officials to reduce overall water usage to 75 gallons per person per day. We were informed that using more than the recommended water amounts would result in an increase cost for us on our quarterly bill as well. Chris and I checked our water bill and we were over the limit by a lot. I made a little list of the things we could do to decrease our water consumption: wash only full loads of clothes, keep a pitcher of water in the fridge for drinking, less lawn watering and no more 20 minute showers…That’s when I remembered the “Cabin Shower” theory.
To take a “Cabin Shower” one gets wet and then turns off the water when not rinsing off soap. I do this three times and the water runs for less than four minutes total. It’s not the three minute shower that my grandpa thought was possible but an honest effort and a huge improvement on my old ways.
Not only have we reduced our water waste, we are saving money and our not-so-infinite resource.