The very hot weather we have been experiencing makes me think a lot about water.  There was a time when I would only drink a glass of water if it was cold and sparkly clear: Then came the time when that changed in a flash. We were traveling in Israel and approaching Masada.

Breaking for a little history* here:

Masada is an ancient fort in Israel situated on top of an isolated plateau. It is located on the eastern edge of the Judean Desert, overlooking the Dead Sea. From 37 to 31 BC, Herod the Great built palaces with fortifications and huge cisterns for rainwater on this site. According to Josephus (Roman Jewish historian 37-100 AD), a group of Jewish Rebels, fighting the Roman Empire, took possession of the plateau in about 66 AD. They held out until 73 AD when the Roman Garrison, after building a ramp, broke into the fortress only to find that the rebels were all dead – a mass suicide of 960 people.  While historic details vary, Masada is one of Israel's most popular tourist attractions.

Throughout our travels, we wisely kept a supply of water with us at all times. However, by the time we ascended to the top of the ancient plateau, we had run dry. The temperature was 106F.  Fortunately, the tour guides on site maintained a supply of water. It looked like it was coming from one of those ancient Roman cisterns. It was murky and very warm. We drank it. It tasted terrible. We drank it anyway. Water is life.

Well, back to our comfortable air-conditioned life at our CCRC.

A couple of years ago, understanding that seniors often forget to drink enough, our administration created a Hydration Station in the lobby of our main building. A very large dispenser of cold water (infused with a variety of fresh produce – I like the cucumber and mint) is maintained 7am to 7pm. There is also coffee (regular and decaf) and tea.  It is very popular and has evolved into a comfortable conversation corner. 

Now, to the future:

Water is the critical substance that astronomers look for when searching for planets that can sustain life.  They use spectroscopy techniques to look for the light signature of water. Although water alone is not sufficient to sustain life, it is necessary. 

As we all know, not all water is fit to drink. Therefore, I will leave you with the famous words written by Samuel Coleridge in 1798 in his “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”.

Water, water, every where,

And all the boards did shrink;

Water, water, every where,

Nor any drop to drink.

Stay cool!

Betty Ago


Betty is a real person who resides in one of our Brookdale entry fee communities. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Brookdale Senior Living.

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