After the serious downpours in July, August & September, this years rains seems to have made a rapid exist. Usually it rains during dushera & we have witnessed some beautiful rainbow formations. But this year there is no signs of it. Even the meteorology department says rains bids good-bye to the entire country !! Now that isn’t what one calls good news, since it means that our river will be dry by february this year…..

& crazily enough our well researched & divined geo-thermal tube well point has also gone dry.

For the last couple of months our pump was running for 30 mts, to fill up the water for our drinking/ cooking/ bathing/ cleaning purposes, Then one day it started to stop after barely 10 mts.

we check the voltage: 220V… that’s good

we check the ampere meter: 12 Amps… that’s fine

we restart the pump, again it stops after 5 mts, the same cycle continued. We assumed there is something wrong with the Starter, so i decided to call a technician, He came & checked everything & said everything looks fine with the connections. He said let’s go & check the motor, the sound of the motor etc seemed fine.

Then why is water not getting pumped out ?

Is there a crack in the pipe ? Checked that also….. no cracks.

So we zeroed into the worst possibility, which is: there is not enough water in the tube well. So how do we do that ? We decided to drop a small pebble & time it on our mobile phone, our technician says 10 secs; when we hear the sound of the pebble hitting the water, so he says approximately the level should be in a depth of 200 ft….. done !

Started the motor again… it works for 5 mts & goes off. Again we do the dropping the pebble test with a timer, this time no sound of the pebble hitting the water, did we miss the sound ? so we tried again… no sound

It means our geo-thermal water point does not have enough recharge, or at a particular height the water is flowing away somewhere else !

Khallas & we are only in the month of October….

I just pulled a chair & sat down……..

What the hell ? Every time when i take a step forward, why is something pulling me back ? Now what are the alternatives, how are we going to grow our wheat & chickpeas & vegetables ? Last years experiment with the solar pump of lifting water from the river is fine, but that’s not going to be enough. We cannot keep building check dams every year, it’s too expensive & not sustainable, we need to store water in the river & we need to store the rain water……how to do it ? The last bits of water is still flowing down the hills into the river….. how to stop it now & store it ?

After a while  the fuming rage got over & i became calmer & was thinking anyway later in the year i am going to be very busy & may be this is a blessing in disguise, Or is some one trying to tell me not to grow any winter crops, is there a message in it ? Anyway its just a tube well which has failed & we will find ways to recharge it. There are farmers around the world like in Palestine where they don’t know whether they can enter their own land & get shot at while they are quietly going about their work, or other farmers in our own country who have faced more crises than all this and not got bogged down & kept their chin up & gone about their work & survived……..i kept mumbling to myself : don’t delve on the problem, then one becomes part of the problem, one needs to shift sides & be part of the solution……

Anyway it was getting late & i had to drop off the technician & i picked up my bag & started to walk.

Then Prakash (who is very wary of me & keeps a distance when he sees me upset, quietly came up to me & whispered bhau: ek mota pakshi bhaat sheti jawal yewun baselela aahe (a big bird has come & sat near our rice fields).

I went back to have a look

& it’s a Woolly Neck Stork

I had seen it a couple of times last year in a distance, but could not photograph or even ID it

Again…..WTF,  this piece of land has a knack of surprising us, despair (one moment) at the state of water levels, but joy in been able to see this bird in such close quarters. I kept my camera aside & sat down & enjoyed the looks. It flew away after a while & could hear its powerful trumpeting call in a distance…..

So, that’s one more addition to our list & its number 77 !!

peace, love & a whisper of the wings !