Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Getting Water in Santillan

For the first weeks of my boondocking on the lot I got the problem of water solved. First dig a hole, then drop the water tank, get a friend, who knows all about it, to connect a hose from the tank to my RV’s 12 volt pump, add a faucet and voilĂ  water galore right into the RV, and even outside to feed a hose.

A very friendly lady in Santillan had accepted to let me connect my hose to her daughter’s tap, a couple of lots down from mine. Her lot is yet to be built on and all was ok just as long as I paid the water bill promptly—which I was soooo happy to do! I really appreciated the gesture since getting my own connection would prove to be a bit involved, which I’ll explain further on.

Everything went relatively well. While the cement wall was being built, a LOT of water was required. Uriel, Teodoro’s helper would string out the three hoses early on in the morning, fill a large drum for the water required for the cement as often as necessary, and once in a while, fill my water tank as well. When the work day was over, he’d pull in the water hoses and so on day after day. The first bill came to 18$ pesos, the second one to 40$ pesos (less than $2. the first month, and about $4.00 the second one). All was fine under sun. We had done nothing illegally, or so we thought. . .

. . . Until an inspector from the Water Commission spied the hoses strung out across the road! He took pictures, went to the office, checked whose tap I was using and. . . abruptly, the water was cut off. The friendly lady received a notice that she was being fined 1,089$ pesos for dispensing water illegally, and a reconnection fee of 250$ pesos would be required if she wanted water back. Me? I was flummoxed. How could such a good deed be penalized? There was no way I’d let her pay and I was not going to dish out $$$ without first presenting my case.

So my good friend Guadalupe, the friendly lady and her daughter, and I all went to the Water Commission to deliberate the situation. I’d taken photos of the wall almost finished, the RV in which I lived, the numerous trails around the lot where sheep, cows, and numerous dogs roamed, showing the REAL necessity for a woman living alone in an RV to be surrounded by some sort of barrier. After thorough explanations, the Big Boss finally relented and cancelled the fine, the reconnection fee, and even allowed me one month to get my own tap from up the road instead of down. Oh, and he warned about reading the fine print--when I get my contract, I’ll make sure that I do!

This is a bit more involved than one post, so I’ll explain on a coming one

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. Just need to state that next Monday, I’ll begin the saga of getting my own water meter.

As an afterthought. Things do get done in Mexico. Only, differently. And they take a tad longer.

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