Natalie Haynes: I'm in luck – I have no garden, no driveway and no pool

The thing is...

Share
Related Topics

The thing is that drought warnings are something which always alarm me. I don't remember the standpipe summer of 1976, but I am traumatised by it, nonetheless. The idea of queuing in the street for water seems to me only one small step from the end of days, and if the end of days is coming, I would at least like to have done my laundry for it.

But I can't reconcile my fear of drought with my fondness for not getting rained on. I like it not raining. My ideal world would be like Camelot, in which Arthur boasts (in the musical, not in Malory), the rain may never fall till after sundown.

To make up for my dislike of rain, and glee when it is dry, I try to save water by showering instead of bathing, and I have no dripping taps (though that is because dripping is the most annoying noise on earth).

This may, however, be a sign not of my eco-friendliness, as I believed, but of my essential cheapness. Because the announcement of a hosepipe ban, beginning on 5 April, has revealed that the consequences of drought are massively wealth dependent.

You won't be able use a hose or sprinkler to water your garden. But, luckily, I don't have a garden, because my flat is next to a railway, and they are surprisingly resistant to my suggestion that we replace the commuter line with a lawn.

You won't be able to clean a patio or driveway, but you need to own a house or garden flat to have either, and those don't come cheap. You also won't be able to wash a car or a boat, but I gave up driving when petrol became more expensive than shoe leather, and I don't have a boat because I don't live in Howards' Way.

Other banned practices include the filling of fountains and swimming pools, but I think I might just slip through those unscathed, too. In fact, the only thing I won't be able to do is clean my windows, and since I hate cleaning, I can only embrace this development.

The über-posh, however, will be exempt from the drought and its effects. The Environment Agency has promised that "the Queen's Diamond Jubilee pageant at the beginning of June will not be affected by the drought". I'm no expert on a pageant, having never been to one, but surely if it happens outside, that is impossible.

Can they really guarantee that there will be no brown grass or wilting flowers in the Queen's eye-line at the start of June? Does she have her own personal rain clouds? Or will she just hose away, regardless? The fine is only £1,000, after all, and she probably has that going spare.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Read Next
David Cameron faces the press as he arrives in Brussels for the EU leaders summit on Thursday reuters  

On the Tusk of a dilemma: Cameron's latest EU renegotiation foe

Andrew Grice
John Profumo and his wife Valerie Robson in 1959  

Stephen Ward’s trial was disgraceful. There can be no justification for it

Geoffrey Robertson QC
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas