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Water woes

One of the first things we noticed when we moved in was the lack of water pressure in the shower.  We didn’t get it… the kitchen sink shot out water like a fireman’s hose as did the bathtub tap.  But the handheld shower head trickled like rain.  It wasn’t even powerful enough to reach the upper walls of the shower for cleaning.

Someone with my head of hair cannot simply manage like that.

I had resorted to two alternatives:
– wash my hair at the gym (but then have to contend with the hot/cold/hot water situation there)
– take the shower head off and wash my hair as if I was holding a garden hose

It was clearly the shower head attachment that was restricting flow.  Oh right, and the fact the shower head clearly had “rain” marked on it. Who designs shower heads like that?!

Off to Castorama I went in search of a “North American, high flowing (and water wasting)” solution.

When I found the wall of shower heads, my heart sank.  Here’s what I saw:

All shower heads are designed to conserve 50% water.

What?!?!  I immediately imagined Jerry and Kramer.  Low flow! I don’t like the sound of that.

Was I doomed to trickle flow and flat hair forever (for the next 2 years in Paris which would feel like forever).

Each shower head I quickly glanced at said “rain” on it.  Once I got over the panic, I systematically started looking closely at each one (and there were like 30 different kinds).

That’s when I noticed: pluie (rain), brume (which Google translate seems to think is “mist” but that’s not what the picture indicates), and other descriptions like “Monsoon squared” now I like the sound of that!!

I went for a mid-priced one – one that sucked in air (or O2 as the packaged indicated) and promised would feel like 100% water flow while only using 50%.  And with 5 settings – I figured one of them would have to work for me!

I was skeptical but David was the first to try it out the next day.

I’ve never seen him with a bigger smile on his face after a shower (and stop your dirty minds from turning)!  He said the shower was “amazing”!

And when I finally hopped in, it was heaven!  I think I took twice as long of a shower because it felt so damn good.  And we’re saving 50% water!

Aside from the times we spent 3 nights sans-shower in Bolivian salt flats and back country camping trip last summer, a shower never felt so satisfying, relaxing and refreshing.

It’s quite ridiculous that I’m excited over a shower head… but finally I made a good purchase from Castorama, one I don’t have to return!  Here’s to life’s little victories.

And, in other water woes… have I mentioned it takes 3 hours to do a load of dishes and about 2 hours for clothes?  And that’s using the “Eco” cycles.

Why you ask?  I never really understood it until we were in the middle of kitchen renovations when I asked our contractor, “where is the hot water connection to the appliances?”

He laughed at me like I was crazy and quickly realized, I was serious.  He explained “the machines heat up the water.”   I said “But in North America, we connect the hot water too.”  (I actually use the beginning of that sentence a little too often…)

Well that’s what it’s like here… and that’s why it takes so long.  Our clothes basically stew in a heating pot of water.

Where is the efficiency in that?

And so much for the drying cycle which takes another 3 hours, in my washer/dryer combo, and not the kind where the dryer is stacked on top of the washing machine – I wish! Nope, here it’s in the same metal drum – figure that one out.

And you need to reduce the load by half for it to work “properly”… it’s a humid drying with no actual air movement in or out of the machine.  It’s the stupidest thing ever.  It’s quicker just to hang the clothes to dry.

Finally, did you ever realize how much lint dryers actually remove?  I do now!  I miss my drying machine. #firstworldproblems

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