Aug 022015

DSC_5013It is July 26th, one of the most important days in Santiago de Cuba. The heat is stifling and the only respite found during the day is a comfortable chair with a fan. Thanks to the extreme drought and continued poor management of utilities, by the government, the lights flicker and all of our water is gone.

It takes many phone calls and a lot of foot work, but the water truck has come to fill the cistern. This costs $12 CUCs, which is pretty much par with the US dollar, out of an average salary of $28 a month, this is scandalous.

DSC_5008Water in Cuba is free, until there is none, and then, like everything else in Cuba you find, water is available, but no longer free.

Water is turned on one day a week so that everyone can pump into their cisterns, and yes, this one day a week dictates your schedule. For this privilege you pay only 60 centavos per month.

Sadly the water does not come every week, often it is no more than 4 out of 7 weeks, and during this drought often water does not appear for 3 weeks.

DSC_5015This house has a cistern that would normally last 21 days, but water hasn’t come often enough to keep it topped up. This week is Carnaval, and our friends and family have been camping out, the showers, the cooking and the simple guzzling of water has taken its toll.

I cannot imagine those that are sitting in this heat who cannot afford the few CUCs that would make things comfortable.