I grew up in Southern California until about high school (early nineties). We were always in a drought, always. So there were shortened showers, and times you could/could not wash cars, or turn on the sprinklers. We were even made to keep splashing to a minimum at the community pool, and forget about the slip-n-slides or super soakers. I always paid attention to water wasting everywhere we went. If my brother left the water running, say while brushing his teeth, I was quick to turn it off before an adult would have to. Big trouble mister!
Now I realize we live in a country where water is not as scarce in most states, but that is not the case in many other parts of the world, and it won’t last forever. I won’t get into climate change, natural resources or anything like that here, as I have not studied enough on the topics, I just still have this urge to not waste, especially food and water.
It was probably my anxiety, even at such a young age, but I felt impulsive about not wasting water, and still do.
While I am not nearly as bad as I used to be, I cannot resist the urge to keep an eye on the clock when my kiddo showers, I swear he could stay in there for hours. I adjust faucets if there is a drip, and the condensation pipes even get a side eye from me… and they’re just doing their jobs! Another thing that drives me absolutely crazy is people washing their hands after using the restroom and leaving the water running while they walk all the way over to the paper towel dispenser, and then casually walk back to use said towel to turn off the faucet.
Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the urge to not touch things in the bathroom and people actually washing their hands, I even talked about the cleanliness issues in bathrooms here. BUT, if you must not touch the faucet after washing, grab your damn paper towels first. What do y’all do when there is only an air-dryer? Do you know how much water is wasted per second with the faucet wide open? ME NEITHER! But it’s a lot, like gallons!
Maybe it’s the anxiety being all dramatic like we are facing the end of the world in my lifetime, or my OCD not being able to handle the lack of order. Maybe it is how hard people work at water conservancy and others are just so “whatever” about it. Or how there are other humans out there who don’t have any fresh water in their towns. Hell, it could even just be an old habit, I should ask other Ex-Californians how they deal with this issue. For whatever reason, it makes me loonier than normal, and the gal at the store just gave me an awkward look for turning off her water.
“Sorry, I hate wasting.”