One of the most basic and vital utilities needed for an individual and community is water. To provide for the effective development of our Vedic Eco Village we had envisioned adding a new waterline that would have to cover 3500 feet. Just for the materials, a total of 1500 feet of two inch and 2000 feet of one inch pipes had to be ordered, along with seven hydrants and various brass fittings for the connections, an initial investment over $ 6,000. So not a simple undertaking.
The work involved digging up a six feet deep canal covering the total distance of 3500 feet where the connected water pipes would be placed and safely covered. The first 1500 feet would be the two-inch pipe and the balance of 2000 feet would be the one-inch pipe. Due to harsh winter seasons in Canada where the temperature drops 20 degree below zero or more, a pipeline needs to be well insulated from the frost, hence the needed depth. In addition, the pipes once inserted must to be well covered initially by hand making sure the original soil removed when again covering the canal will not damage the pipes. We were thankful that Rohini Kumar prabhu was able to take up that arduous task.
The main person supervising the work was our General Manager for Vedic Eco Village, Ramanath prabhu. He had already spent many hours selecting the proper path for the waterline and also choosing those spots where to install our hydrants. As the canal digging gradually progressed we had to make additional side digging along the way to place the hydrants. Ramanath prabhu not only had to deal with jumping in and out of the war trench like unending canals but also had to contend with uninvited guests such as snakes that made their way inside to catch some of the voles that had fallen in the trench.
Our first hydrant was earmarked just before the 4 acres Gurukula Colony where we plan to have a few small guest cabins to the north of the colony. Within the Gurukula Colony, we had planned 4 additional hydrants, the first being to the northeast area where we plan to have a small pond. We thought of taking up a waterline to the Goshala area on the northwest side for our second hydrant but quickly realized this would be too time consuming due to many trees all along that area. At $ 130 an hour or more than $ 2 a minutes you don’t want to waste too much time with the honorable excavator. So we decided to install that hydrant later. We also had to change the direction of the main canal realizing that following the old Minnabariet road that was already clear of trees would be saving us valuable time, which it did.
Our second hydrant within the Gurukula Colony was in the southeast section where we plan to have the kitchen and prasadam area. The canal continued towards the present library building where there was an old hydrant from previous time. We decided to keep that hydrant and connected it to our new waterline.
We then crossed the Minnabariet road where, to its immediate east, we installed yet another hydrant for irrigating the fruit orchard. This location is very ideal in that the land slopes east where we can easily irrigate by natural gravitation the gardens and additional fruit orchards in the future. The road turning towards the cabin was also made larger to facilitate vehicles maneuvering around that corner. Now there is ample space for both vehicles and the cows walking through.
Our last and most involved portion of the water line undertaking was from Minnabariet road to the cabin as we had to cross over a culvert and negotiate to bring the canal to the north of the cabin for yet another new hydrant spot where we will have a trailer and possibly more residents on that northeast side. The field close to the cabin is swampland (many years back it use to be a lake) and we knew we would be hitting water, which we did. The situation was somewhat delicate in that we had to find the original connection close to the cabin to connect this new line. Fortunately the excavator was able to dig up the soil in such a way that there was no damage to the existing hydrant. We were thus able to easily unearth that section but soon realized that the pipefitting was different from our exiting one-inch pipe. This took some time to work out a system that allowed for the fitting to be correct. Fortunately Krishna gave Ramanath prabhu the intelligence to resolve that, otherwise our entire endeavor would have been to no avail.
We also took advantage of the excavator to make three new ponds, one close to the cabin and two more north of the cabin. We hope this can one day attract a few ducks and other birds. And who knows, if for some reason the waterline gets damaged, we can use the water in those ponds for bathing or watering plants. We also wanted a road access to the first neighbor, Ramanath prabhu and the excavator picked up rocks and other debris on the way, so now have a passable road that will serve as an additional exit/entrance out of or in the south end.
On the seventh day we did a bit of finishing work at different places. Part of that involved opening up the two main entrances to the Gurukula Colony, the one to the East/West Raja Marga from the east side of Minnabariet road that conveniently comes in between two existing large trees and the entrance to the North/South Raja Marga that conveniently comes from the “road” left by the excavator when covering that trench area to the north side of Minnabariet road. We also worked out a simple but practical parking area where signs will be placed for visitors to leave their vehicles.
The next day, after all the dust had settled, Ramanath checked the water pressure for the new waterline. We were both surprised to capture the pressure at 130 PSI (pounds per square inch) that is considered very high. All in all, the endeavor proved to be successful as we now have our own source of water by Krishna’s mercy.
Written by RP Bhakti Raghava Swami
OM SRI SURABHYAI NAMAH! OM SRI GURAVE NAMAH!