Really, I’ve always been a wannabe farmer.
When I started dating a boy in high school whose dad farmed a little, I bought a pair of western boots and a leather belt etched with my name in big, capital letters – B R E N D A.
I looked so cute when I went with him to “change the water” on a few early Saturday mornings, the sun rising in the distance. As we bent over, row after row, changing the directions of the hoses or pipes or whatever those things were, I tried, but I never could quite grasp the physics behind the process.
But who cared? I had driven us both out to the country in my green Dodge Dart (he didn’t have his license yet), I looked cute, he was sweet, and I daydreamed of us getting married in boots and jeans, honeymooning on a trail ride, and then “changing water” for the rest of our lives, with our little kids all running around gleefully in the mud.
That didn’t happen – and I’m ever so glad (because I’m pretty gleefully happy myself), but I must say that traipsing around in my boots on those cool summer mornings made me think a little deeper about the power of a consistent trickle of water.
Fast forward to 2005 when we moved to a house on two acres in a rural school district outside Amarillo. That sweet man who married me built the biggest, most well-designed garden plot out of railroad ties, and we planted all manner of vegetables and herbs. Oh, my. It was very, very, very exciting.
And then the drought hit. People stopped watering their yards. Conserving water was on the minds of everyone – and wasting water was on the minds of no one.
It was then that I made a New Year’s Resolution that is probably the only one I’ve ever completely kept.
(photo taken one Saturday morning on a walk across the bridge)
“I, hereby, Brenda McDearmon, resolve…
to forever and always…
no matter what…
no matter where….
Drink all my restaurant water.
Sometimes when I’m chitty-chatting too much to make a motion of restraint as the waitstaff dutifully refills my glass for the third time, I think I might could just leave this one un-drunk.
But then I remember stepping across wide, dry earthen cracks in the space between our house and our neighbors’.
Sometimes it’s chilly outside and I really don’t want to drink cold water. I’d rather have hot coffee.
But then I remember that the drought went on for a long time, and people thought Lake Travis would never be full again in their lifetime – if ever.
Sometimes everyone is waiting on me to finish my ice cold water, and I can’t drink it that fast, and I’d rather just get up and go.
But then I remember that I really don’t think I can do that any more. I’ve been drinking all my restaurant water for several years now, and I just don’t think I can take it for granted like I used to.
What if we all made this same resolution? Just think of the water that would go un-wasted!
Will you join me?
We’re all trying to drink enough water anyway. How about if we make a commitment to drink all of the water that is poured into our glass at every restaurant we patronize – all year long, for the rest of our days? And then just think of the ripple effect this decision would have if we teach our kids and grandkids to do the same!
I’m raising my glass where I sit right now – this one’s for you, farmers everywhere, changing the water or turning the spigots or programming the sprinklers!
All you hard-working, boot-wearing, early-rising, biscuit-eating farmers out there – I know you need this water to raise the crop that feeds us all. So – thankfully, gratefully…
I, hereby, Brenda McDearmon, resolve that in 2017…
as I lose between 5 and 25 pounds …
read through the Bible twice…
and plan a trip to Pawhuska…
I will keep drinking all my restaurant water.
Oh – and also, I resolve….
To never again as long as I live, wear a leather western belt with my name etched across my hind parts in big, capital letters.
Encouraging intentional adventure as we drink both enough and all of our water,
PS – Happy New Year!