In the late 1970’s I was speaking with a fellow traveller who was from Gibraltar, who explained to me that the Gibraltarians paid a high price for piped water to their homes. It was metered. As a consequence, her family, like others, were cautious how they used this commodity. Water for a bath was used by various members of the family before it was used for other purposes. It was siphoned into buckets to flush toilets, for example, though not on all occasions of W.C.use. Water used for cleaning vegetables might water an edible plant or two. There was no such thing as running tap water while teeth were cleaned. Mouth rinsing water came out of a tumbler, and the used water went into another receptacle. Washing machine water was also siphoned away for secondary use. As far as was possible, not a drop of water was wasted.
Thirty years later, in a leafy East London suburb, I sat in a garden where I heard the constant trickle of water, yet there was no stream nearby or other obvious water source. What I was hearing? It was explained that the water from the washing machine was being siphoned off into a garden irrigation system.
There is an abundance of water where I live now. I do not have to think twice about how I use water, however, I do, though not to the extent that I might have to if I lived elsewhere. Every time I turn on a tap, the memories of my chat with the lady from Gibraltar are evoked.