In this country we are spoiled in many ways, including having access to reliable and largely affordable forms of energy which allow us to heat and cool our homes, power our many devices and enjoy a quality of life that is the envy of much of the world.
One of our greatest blessings is a readily available and dependable source of safe drinking water, which we must have to survive.
Last month’s double whammy of winter storms Uri and Viola reemphasized, for many here in Tallahatchie County as well as in other parts of the state and country, the critical importance of the water that flows from our taps.
Many locals remember how the “Great Ice Storm of 1994” jarred us with a swift kick in the pants as a reminder about the relevance of electricity in our lives. Some were without power for several weeks. Even those whose service was disrupted for a much shorter time found it to be a very sobering experience.
We take too much for granted, right?
When subfreezing temperatures plunged the local mercury to single digits during the third week of February this year, customers of the Cascilla and Charleston water systems found themselves high and dry due to the weather’s impact on equipment that enable those utilities to function.
Because of a loss of pressure, water service was disrupted for about one week in both areas. But even when the lines began delivering a steady stream again, boil-water alerts inconvenienced thousands.
Those alerts finally were lifted this week — Cascilla’s on Sunday and Charleston’s on Tuesday — giving new meaning to the term “showers of blessings.”
We owe a debt of gratitude to the men and women of our public utilities, some of whom are volunteers and work diligently to oversee and maintain the lifelines that bring their services into our homes and businesses. When the electricity, water or natural gas stop flowing, our inconveniences and frustrations become theirs, too, and they are thrust into the role of fixing the problem so that service may be restored.
We cannot say that we won’t take our utility services for granted. Fact is, they perform so flawlessly most of the time that we don’t even have to think about it. That’s a true blessing.