Hi! My name is Aqua. I am 12 years old, and I live in a town called Uhoi. Uhoi is the small town in Malawi. Everyone in Uhoi is happy, but most of them can’t have fresh water. No one has enough to survive. Because of that, I always have a special duty to do after school. That duty is getting clean water for my family. It is my responsibility to get fresh water from another town because I am the oldest child in my family. My dad ran away four years ago, and my mom is now sick. At first when I started getting water, I was too tired and I just wanted to give up. However, I’m doing this every day because it is my responsibility. It’s quite hard to get clean water because there are so many people who need clean water, but I always try my best to get some.
I started today’s journey when school ended. To start the journey, I needed two 1L water bottles, and my best friend, Pixie. Pixie is the donkey I got a year ago. The town where I can get the water is located 30 km away from my town. Before I started my journey,
“Good luck today, my little donkey,” I whispered to his ear. I also wished for good luck before I started my journey because there were sometimes when I couldn’t get water.
To get to the town, we had to walk through the rainforest, which is commonly called “Fruity” by our villagers, and the highway. In the rainforest, I collected fruit such as apples, bananas, and papayas for my family. I collected fruit because they might be helpful if we don’t have water. After collecting the food for my family, I decided to take a short break and had an enormous bite of banana.
While taking a short break, I imagined myself, four years from now, where I wouldn’t need to get clean water from the town anymore. There would be a water tap that we can always go and get the clean water. There would be everything that we need to survive, everyone in the town would be happier, and we would have our own bathroom that we can take shower. My family happily living in a village where everything would be available.
“Do you also want some fruit?” I asked.
“Heeeeeeee!!” Pixie cried joyfullly.
We shared the banana together. We started the journey again after we took a rest. Even though I was still exhausted and stressed, I began my journey again. At the end of the rainforest, there is a highway. I always have to be brave and be prepared to walk through the highway because of the fast cars. Those fast cars might hit me.
“Are you ready?” I asked.
“Hee-haw!” Pixie answered.
Before I stepped on the highway, I thought to myself and hoped there would be enough water for my family because if there isn’t enough then we would not have enough water to drink till the next day. With bravery, I stepped on the highway.
I had to wait in line to get clean water. At 5 pm, everyone gathered around the well because that was the time when the water started coming out. I sometimes see my classmates, or neighbors there.
“Hi!” a beautiful voice said while tapping my shoulder. So I turned around to see who it was. It was my classmate, Yojoa.
“Hi, you also trying to get water?” I asked.
“Yeah, we don’t have any.”
“Oh. Why don’t we start lining up? I think it’s almost 5.”
We went to the well and started lining up. Because my legs were tired, I just sat down on the ground, waiting in the line for the clean water.
“ERRRRRR” the bell loudly rang. This bell notices us that water is coming out. When the bell rang, everyone ran to the well. I always try my best to get clean water, but I almost fail every time.
“NO WATER AGAIN!!!!!!” I screamed.
“Oh really? I feel so sorry for you,” Yojoa said.
“No, it’s okay. Did you get the water?”
“Yes, I did.”
“Lucky. Anyway, goodbye.”
I’m always disappointed and feel sorry for my sick mother and my brothers. After I either get water or not, I have to start the journey back to home. The same way I always go through, and the same things that I do.
At night, the highway got worse, which means that it got more dangerous. At night, there were some kidnappers wandering around, policemen with the guns wandering around, and the wild animals that sometimes attack my Pixie.
“You have to move faster kiddo, someone might kidnap you,” someone yelled. It was the policeman.
“Ok, sir, thank you,” I replied.
We moved faster because it was dangerous, and I had some homework to do.
“HEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!” Pixie cried painfully.
“What happened?” I fearfully asked.
Next to him, there was a wild cat that bit my donkey.
“Go away!” I shouted, to keep my donkey safe.
“Meow,” the cat cried and ran away.
I remember the day when Pixie got bitten by the wild dog. It was worse. It was the way back home from the town. We were walking in the rainforest, and suddenly the wild dog came out and bit my donkey. I didn’t know what to do because I was too young that day. Pixie got injured badly, and his leg was bleeding. I did everything that I could do. I wrapped around his leg with the banana leaves. Because of the banana leaves that I wrapped, he could at least walk.
I don’t want any animals to attack Pixie because it takes time to heal. When my donkey got bitten by the wild dog, he needed six months to heal. For that long, I had to carry the water bottles by myself.
After a few hours, I arrived in my town. Before I went into my house, I fed Pixie and put him into the little place where he could sleep.
“I’m back,” I shouted, walking into the house.
“Did you get the water today?” mom asked.
“No, I failed.”
“Ok, thank you for trying anyway.”
Then, I left the water bottles on the desk. If I fail at getting the fresh water, I have to take my brothers to the river for bathing. So, I took my brothers for bathing to the river.
“Let’s go, guys, I won’t have enough time to finish my homework if you guys are being that lazy,” I told them with a sleepy voice.
“Okay, we are coming,” brothers said with laziness.
I took my brothers to the river and make them bathe. The river was really dirty but this was the only way that we could keep ourselves clean.
“Are you guys done?” I asked.
“Almost, just a minute,” one of them answered.
After they were done with bathing, I had to take them back home safely. After I took them back home, I had to finish my homework. It was almost 8 o’clock when I started doing homework.
“Why did the teacher assign this much of homework??? I don’t like her,” I muttered.
“What did you say Aqua?” mom asked.
“Nothing!” I yelled.
I blamed my teacher, wondering why she gave me so much homework. Even though I wanted to give up on everything, I just decided to finish it. After doing the homework, I went to bed.
I am the unluckiness. It is always me who can’t get water, and it is only me who has to continue living in this life. I want this life to be stopped. I am jealous of the people who are at the same age as me but have everything that they need to survive unlike me. They go to the proper school, they have clean water that they can drink, and they can bathe with clean, and hot water. However, even they have everything, they don’t know how lucky they are. Instead, they waste lots of the things that they have, such as water and food. This is why I am calling myself unluckiness. When I first started getting water, I was so proud of myself that I could help my family. But now, I want to stop with it.
“How can I stop with this life?” I muttered.
“What did you say?” mom asked from the kitchen.
“Nothing. Goodnight mommy,” I said.
“Good night,” mom replied with a calming voice.
It was finally the end of the day.