April 9, 2014

Water lines remain frozen

By STU MERRY

Every evening when Jerry and Cheryl Mehlhoff come home, they hope there’s a present waiting for them. So far, and for the past month, there’s been no present. That gift is running water.

The Mehlhoffs, along with Jerry’s brother, Dave, have been without water since about March 13. The families live at the end of a water line from Garrison Rural Water District.

They aren’t alone. Five homes in Garrison also continue to be without running water. Their lines are frozen, and have been for some time.

It’s anybody’s guess as to when those frozen lines will thaw. And that continues to put a burden on a number of area residents.

For the Mehlhoff’s it’s like living in the 30s and 40s. "You don’t realize how much you rely on water,"

Like true North Dakotans the Mehlhoff’s have adapted. Feeling like their ancestors, Jerry and Cheryl have been carrying buckets of water. Lots of buckets of water. Both Jerry and Dave have wells from which to get their water from, so it’s not a large distance to carry the pails. But, still. Cheryl said laundry is done in town, and paper products are used extensively to cut down on dishes.

We’ve just done whatever," she said. "We are just getting along."

The Mehlhoff’s hope that someday soon that present – running water – will greet them when they turn on the faucet.

Cheryl said Jerry is taking it all in stride telling her the time to rejoice will come … sometime. In Jerry’s humorous way, he tells her; "Let’s celebrate the Fourth of July with water this year, not fireworks."


The Weather Network