I Lived Without Water and Would Do it Again

by Estar Holmes
(Inland NW, USA)


Knowing how to live comfortably without running water is empowering. I have done it a lot, in cabins in the woods, where there was a bit of room to spread out and experiment. I learned from others who had mastered the lifestyle, and also by trial-and-error. Water becomes a much more precious resource when you have to haul it.


I think most people recoil in fear of living without running water. But there are "tricks to the trade" that people who do it on purpose full-time can teach you. Whether you are a thrivalist or survivalist, it's good information to have.

Wait a minute. People live that way on purpose? Yes, it's a trade-off. If you reach a fork in the road where having running water holds you back from fulfilling a dream, you might choose to do without it. In that sense, living without running water is empowering. It helps people fulfill goals. (Like the woman in the story above).

If you ever look into it, you will find there are ways to live gracefully without running water. People lived without it since time immemorial and we are here today because they figured out how to do it. It's really not that bad.

For example, cultures around the world rely on steam bathing. When I lived without a bathroom, I built a number of sweat tents and huts. Some were more practical than others. For the most part, I could get squeaky clean by combining heat and four gallons of water.

There are all kinds of legalities about living without running water in the developed world. It's not something I would jump into lightly for a number of reasons. I have found a lot of good information by googling earthships, humanure, and oasis design.

Embracing the best of tradition and appropriate technologies can help you get free of reliance on Babylon. Doesn't that sound good?

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