“How it (drought) will affect me”

Ronnie remembers dealing with water shortages in the past by hauling buckets of water up to neighbours in her tenement. She wonders if this might occur again in the future and how a lack of water could affect food prices too. Additionally, flooding could affect the city in the future and she imagines people seeking out her present house on the hill.

Ronnie: If there was reduced water availability, particularly in the towns, you’d end up with standpipes. And I did this and I’m not actually sure if it was in a snow situation or if it was in the drought of 76 but I was on the fifth floor of a Clifton tenement and I had a 96 year old lady living below me and I was trying to get the water, in buckets, from down the end of the road and it was very, very hard work and, initially, I filled the buckets up and I just couldn’t. I got halfway up the hill and had to ditch half of it. So that would be very hard work, particularly for the elderly. Obviously, cracks in buildings. Lots of Bristol is clay, I think, and marl and stuff, so that would be a problem. I live on the top of a hill, so it does occur to me, if we get flooding, which can happen and does happen, where I live, everyone’s gonna move in with me. They’re gonna come up the hill and say, “Well you’ve got a spare bedroom, haven’t you?” And then, obviously, food would be more expensive and the choice of food is going to be a lot different. Obviously, I’ve just drawn a picture of rich people with a table full of choices and poor people with obviously different, less choices because the cost will go up. And I thought of the good side would be the children would be very happy because they don’t have to wash so much but it does actually concern me that, if you had no water, then obviously, my last bit is that I would die because, without water, I actually realised, recently, just how much water I do need to drink to feel 100 percent and it’s a lot. More than I ever used to understand and that’s probably why I used to feel tired. You need a lot of clean, nice water to feel really good.

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