This past year while living in Haiti and India, I didn’t take any showers. Daily I would “take a bucket” as this was the only source for washing myself in both countries. In the picture to the left there is a large blue barrel into which my family would pour water every couple weeks and from there I would use the white yogurt container to pour water over me. Once to wet my hair and body and if particularly dirty two. Then soap and shampoo which would generally necessitate at least four more yogurt containers of water. I used less than a bucket of water a day to clean myself. Now back in North America, I adapt to this system by just taking super fast showers, although I am certain it is a bit more than a bucket.
How we conserve water depends on our abilities to observe and self-critique. We can have the good intention and ecological rhetoric in the world but unless we are ready to make changes in our own daily lives, no amount of complaining about the prices of fuel or about our governments inability to respect the Kyoto Protocol really has any weight. If we want to conserve water, we need think as individuals how we use water presently and what changes we might effect to reduce our overuse of water.