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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Biohazard

A few weeks ago I noticed the tap water tasting a bit "off". I have been drinking the tap water here for almost 2 years without problems and now it tastes funny and I had some intestinal malfunctions. After talking to my coworkers, I have discovered that NOT ONE of them drinks tap water in Abu Dhabi. They thought I was crazy to do so. They all drink bottled water. After 2 weeks of not wanting to be far from a bathroom, I thought they may be right.

Sure enough, I switched to bottled water and without being too graphic, my problems ended. I would expect that a modern country such as the U.A.E. would have potable water, maybe it is just the place where I live, but it is relatively new so one would expect sanitary conditions. What is disturbing to me is that for my whole life, I have had an unlimited supply of drinking water as convenient and close as my tap. Now I can't trust that anymore and have to procure drinking water, just another pain in the ass. Yet another assumption of life dashed.

Next missive will be about my rather tedious trip to Kathmandu, Nepal.

14 comments:

ultra[blue] said...

It has nothing to do with the country. Places like Arizona and New Mexico you CANNOT drink the tap water either.

And yes, you are very much insane for having done so. You're lucky you arent dead!

Bottled, nothing else.

Ace said...

I learned my lesson....but I drank it for almost 2 years with no ill effects until recently. The last few weeks I thought I was going to die from it. I made sure I was never far from a bathroom until I figured out the cause!

I expect this from Guadalajara, but not here, dammit!

ultra[blue] said...

Hot stagnant water in old water tanks running thru old water pipes that are for the most part impossible to reach and clean...

It's kind of logical.

Infact, Im surprised we dont get ill from bathing.

Plus, you did it for 2 years and didnt fall ill... you can dodge the bullet many times, but not forever.

BTW, Dont sign up for one of those services that bring you the 5 gallon bottles to be used with a dispensing machine... Those machines start to gather bacteria real fast. In a year you'll be back in the same situation.

Buy bottles of water.

You are way too fooled by the tall buildings methinks.

Neil Roberts said...

I've always had 2 litre bottles delivered by my local grocer. I know you live in the outback ( :-) ) but I'm sure you can find a grocer to deliver - maybe from the pink shops? c.17/18 Dhs for 12 x 2 litre bottles of Masafi. .... you know it makes sense.....

Ace said...

@UB....where I live is relatively new but the summer heat has apparently turned the water supply into a nasty biological soup Petri dish. Also, advice taken. I was really sick for awhile. I thought it was my penchant for KFC.

@Neil...Even though I am out in the boonies, there is fortunately a grocery store close by so potable water is available. So much for assuming things are OK, I never will again!!!

shafeena said...

Haha.. This reminds me for when i got married and moved to london for a bit. When i found my husband drinking tap water, i was flabbergasted ( to say the least) i refused to touch and mand forced him to switch to bottled water, cuz in the UAE, its just NOT DONE !!!

shafeena said...

Haha.. This reminds me for when i got married and moved to london for a bit. When i found my husband drinking tap water, i was flabbergasted ( to say the least) i refused to touch and mand forced him to switch to bottled water, cuz in the UAE, its just NOT DONE !!!

Neil Roberts said...

I have drunk tap water in the UK all my life and never had a problem... but here, I definitely drink bottled water....

Ace said...

U[B]... fooled by tall buildings indeed!!

Shafeena...I never had problems back in the US but some Mexican touristas get sick there. Different bugs I suppose.

Neil...I am shocked to realize I have to depend on bottled water now!!! Just another chore to do, even for ice. Tap water sometimes tasted funny in the US but it didn't make me sick. Maybe I ought to "acclimate" myself with the Abu Dhabi water and problem solved after a few weeks of discomfort.

Anna-Lou said...

I told you many time to don't drink tap water ! It taste very weird (at least very different of water in french Alps ;). Buy Masafi water, it's heavy but better for health. Thrill-seaker ahahah

Chuck said...

I find it funny that America has one of the safest public water supplies in the WORLD and people here spend billions of dollars a year on bottled water. I do admit to having a filter Pur filter on my faucet but that costs pennies per gallon instead of dollars per bottle. That might be an option for you, or if you need more extreme purification a reverse osmosis system will definitely take care of things.

Ace said...

Anna-Lou...yes you did warn me about the tapwater and your warning came true so I quit drinking it. If beer starts making me sick next, I will think you cast an evil spell on me!!

Chuck...good point about the filter, I'll look into it. I don't enjoy purchasing and carrying 10.5 liters of water up the stairs every few days.

Firefox said...

:O I can't believe you didn't know. Anyway, you know better now.

That reminds me. I was in the UK recently and it's safe to drink tap water there but because I've been so used to bottled water I felt a bit weird about it initially. My aunt must have thought I was a total snob until I told her. Haha.

Ace said...

Firefox, I was naive, I drank the stuff for two years with no ill effects. Something happened this summer that tainted the water supply. Needless to say I will not take chances with it again. I am not a fan of Russian Roulette.