I've lived in this city for 35 years and have never once seen water rationing. That is, until now. We have not seen one single droplet of rain for more than six months, which means our reserves are dwindling quickly with no possibility of rain in sight. This means that new businesses looking to open here will probably take it to a city with more water available. With all of this weighing on the minds of responsible citizens, why is it that I am STILL seeing water standing in street curb wells all over town? Sigh. The world is indeed full of sheep and outright jerks. We certainly don't have a shortage of those around here.
Our neighboring city 20 miles away has already issued mandatory water rationing and penalties will begin next month for those who abuse the watering rules. Our mayor has pleaded with citizens to cut back before he is forced to put us on rationing as well. This effects local nurseries, sports fields, fire departments, golf courses and more. And, with all of the wildfires, we're running out of water even faster than anyone ever anticipated. The oil industry also needs water to perform the fracturing process, which now allows us to go back into shut down oil wells and bring up deposits of oil that we were unable to extract before this process was introduced.
Furthermore, there are oil wells literally everywhere out here in West Texas and when wildfires get close, those are the first to be put out. Otherwise, we'd be having monster explosions out the wazoo and it's really unthinkable what kind of damage that could do to our little corner of the world. So, much of the water reserves in both counties are already low from using it to put out those fires. And yet, the high winds and near 100 degree temperatures continue to wreak their special kind of havoc upon us. The last figures I saw were saying that over 90,000 acres have burned in West Texas thus far. One ranch alone has had over 30,000 acres burned and that fire was started by downed electrical wires (from the high winds).
After the hardest freeze this area has seen since the 1920's, ailing plants and trees barely hanging on are probably not going to make it. Luckily, we have a water well for watering outside, but we need to conserve it as well, since we don't know how deep it is or how long it will last us.
Now it's time for me to
Here's what that pair of Oleanders look like now. The green you see is the blasted trumpet vine trying to choke out an already deceased pair of shrubs. Nothing can kill that damned vine, trust me. It's as hearty as mesquite bush. Those Oleanders were like 15 years old but the cold got them anyway. Frankly, it didn't make me feel any better to see that most of the Oleanders around town are dead.
And remember how hard I worked on the front yard before Mr. Snooty's 40th high school class reunion last year? It looked so pretty until that freeze hit us in February. I had even moved the potted Hibiscus trees to the guest house for the winter. That turned out to be a wasted effort. The freeze took them too. However, one day when I was at Sam's Club they had the exact same size Hibiscus trees for $15.98 a piece, so I bought four. Yes!
At any rate, here's what it looks like now, along with a dead ornamental pear tree and the barely-hanging-on Oleander. Wah. Okay, I'm done whining but I don't feel any better as I leave to go search for a remote new nursery that claims to have Oleanders......