Saturday, November 01, 2008

Red Light - its alright

When I first got here I was confused by the fact that a lot of the houses had these crazy red lights. You see, where I grew up, the story was that if you had a red light on your house it meant that you were welcoming to gentlemen with a bit of cash and desire for a very friendly encounter... Rather than living in the red light district, the lights are there for the water delivery trucks to tell them when a house is empty - if the light is red, you are alright and if its off - you better not flush the toilet. We haven't run out of water too often, but we did manage to run out and then have the propeller in our pump mangle itself completely right in the middle of parent teacher interviews. Its funny, about 3 years ago I wrote a paper for Urban Planning on water and sewage infrastructure in the north - look up the word utilidor for the keeners (we don't have any here though) - :D and here I am living it. At least we aren't one of the places where you have to put your sewage out on the curb (or side of the snow-covered gravel road as appropriate) in a garbage bag.

So there you go... same symbol, different meaning and it sure makes you rethink water and how you use it - especially after taking it for granted back home.

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Blogger Shelley said...

Glad you've explained that light thing. But it would make more sense if the light were on meant empty.(easier to see in the coming darkness)

3:22 PM  

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