Shared Water

In India, water is much more of a shared public resource. Playing basketball on the public courts, if you bring a bottle of water, you should expect to be asked to share with anyone who wants a bit.

This is a public water source. In most places I’ve visited, a drinking fountain is the dispenser of choice. Here, a shared cup is the option.

I think that using a cup would tend to reduce the overall wasted water, since you’d tend to drink it in quantized amounts.  As opposed to the drinking fountain, where you have a constant flow, some of which one invariably fails to consume. However, the added number of parts required, dust and dirt, potential cross-contamination and other factors tend to make me favor the drinking fountain.

I do not know why the chains were made long enough for the cups to fall to the ground. Potentially to allow for the cups to be raised up enough to reach a taller person’s mouth.


  1. @ Conall – Is it rude to refuse to share a bottle of water at a public park? Can you ask that the recipient of a share of water (i) to refrain from touch the cap or mouth of the water bottle and (ii) to avoid putting their mouth or lips on the top of the water bottle? In a place where water is shared, are those requests understood and common practice?

    While I think I would prefer a drinking fountain to the cup/chain, I must admit that drinking from a drinking fountain is never as thirst quenching as drinking a nice cup of clean water. Why do you suppose that is? Too much effot in beding over and slurping from a stream of water?

  2. conalldempsey says:

    @ Mark

    Yeah that’s pretty rude and basically isn’t done. Maybe you could pretend to be sick or something. Actually though, everyone is also very cognizant of not putting their lips to the bottle, they just hold it up above their mouth and pour water in.

    I agree though about the drinking fountain never being as thirst quenching. Great observation!I always attributed that to the fact that you can’t really get the “water rushing in and filling your mouth” feeling, but I think there is more too it.

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