I’ve been saying — loudly and frequently — that we are having a drought. This is the dryest summer I can remember. As a photographer, I’ve spent a lot of time around dams and other waterways. All of the dams are locked down and many of the riverbeds and ponds are dry.
Today, our well went dry.
We don’t have the option of “city water.” There is no city water in this area. We had the well guy here and he said our well is empty. We did have a stuck flap on a toilet and that’s probably what ran the well out … but the well had to already be very low for that to empty the entire well.
If the well doesn’t refill, if it has gone dry, there are just two choices: drill a new well or hydro-fracking.
Our well is very deep, about 475 feet. We don’t have enough money — or credit — to drill a new well on the property. The price tag for that starts at around $5,000 and goes up from there. That’s more money than we have in savings or credit combined. What’s left? For about half of everything we have in the world, or about $3,000 (that’s the bottom line it will probably cost more), we can hydro-fracture our well.
Hydro-fracking is a process of injecting water under high pressure into the bedrock foundation around a well to flush out fine particles and rock fragments from existing bedrock fractures, or increase the size of existing fractures. 99% of the time, this results in an increased flow of water into the well.
Well fracturing can also be used — and this is our situation — on older wells that have lost their recovery rates over time, usually because of mineralization (iron deposits — we have an iron deposit issue here we have always known about) and incrustation (silt and sediment) of rock fractures.
One way or another, it doesn’t sound like we are going to get out of this with what is left to us intact. I am so unhappy and frightened. I’m not looking for sympathy. I’m sure everyone will be very sympathetic. Our problem is financial and unless we can come up with enough money to fix the well, we will be homeless. Soon. This is not an “eventually” kind of problem. You cannot live long without water. Maybe a week, tops.
I am terrified. We are in trouble and there is nowhere to turn.
On the suggestion of some friends, I’m going to try and raise some money. To say how painful this is to my pride is impossible to explain. If I could see any other choice, I’d take it.
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