Thursday, March 19, 2009

Quenching thirst

(cross-posted from View from the Rafters, my non-running blog)

Last Saturday, my running buddy Tiffany and I were excited to have a Spring-like day for our 8-miler training run. After about mile 3, my saliva turned into paste, and she commented that her mouth was turning to cotton. Our trail suddenly transformed into a virtual desert and we began having hallucinations about families standing beside creeks (no wait, we really do run by a creek...).

Our new goal became making it to the comfort station, where we knew there was a water fountain. By the time we arrived, we were imagining exactly what the water would taste like and how it would feel. I pressed down on the magic water fountain button and... nothing. I waited a few seconds and tried again. The abundant streams of water I had been fantasizing about never came. The fountain was dry.

So we looked at the door... of course! The bathroom. We each cupped our hands under the sink and cringed at the not-so-pleasant taste of the sink water, assuring ourselves we were only four more miles away from Schnucks -- the neighborhood grocery store that had not one, but TWO water fountains in the front hallway.

We vowed never to go on a long run without our fuel belts -- featuring small water bottles -- again.

Sunday, March 22 is World Water Day. My ridiculous running story is about all I know about thirst, but my friends at WaterPartners remind me that 884 MILLION people still don't have access to safe drinking water. Each year, over 3.5 million people die from water-related disease.

While I am running and marking drinking spots along my route, millions of women and children have to walk miles to find ANY water -- and often, their sources aren't nice comfort stations, but polluted water sources.

I share these statistics, not to overwhelm, but to encourage your help. For just $25, you can provide someone will clean water for the rest of his/her life. Visit my firstgiving page to find out more and donate.

You can also help simply by searching the Web. is a search engine powered by yahoo. Thanks to advertising revenue, they are able to donate approximately 1 cent for every Web search you do. I GoodSearch for WaterPartners, I encourage you to join me. GoodSearch also has a shopping feature, allowing some of your purchasing dollars to be donated. In the last two years, an estimated $134 has been contributed to WaterPartners just through Web searches.

Join me in saving lives.