This spring there was a Sunday when we woke up and our water was out. Ironically, it was raining cats and dogs outside. (And likely, this is why our well wasn’t working properly…maybe something about the water table? We’re still not sure.) At any rate, we had a full day without water in our pipes while watching water pour down all around us.
Thankfully we had some bottled water for drinking and all the while rain drops had been collecting in our wheelbarrows, a few buckets and a big storage tupperware. Because of that collected grey water, we were able to flush our toilets all day.
And it started a conversation of how odd it is that we depend solely on the water below us when there is also water that falls from above.
So began the wheels in our minds. Rory had an idea right away. He started telling me about a cistern that would catch the rainwater off of the poll shed. In one good day of rain, he calculated, it could catch enough water to water our animals for the entire summer.
By the end of the day we had found a free 300-gallon tank.
What is amazing to me, is that the whole duration of this project (building the base, spray painting the tank, hauling everything to the grove) I thought I understood what he was up to. But the day he put in the PVC pipes and the water spigots for the animals I was utterly blown away. He created an automatic watering system for the pigs, goats and sheep (with a float hose for the sheep’s bucket) from that one cistern that will collect free rain water when we need it. I was totally impressed.
The animals seemed impressed too.