Rain dancing for water

Pinelands resident Brenda Dennison shows the 2004 Tatler article in which rain caused flash floods in the area but failed to ease water restrictions at the time.

A Pinelands woman says a forgotten water crisis from 13 years ago should have been heeded as harbinger of much worse water woes to come, but no one listened.

Brenda Dennison has a Tatler article from 2004 describing how the City of Cape Town imposed water restrictions to deal with a dire water shortage that year.

She believes a rain dance she did at the time helped to save us back then, but she’s not so sure if it will do any good now.

Ms Dennison has been living in Pinelands since 1985 and she says few barely remember the water restrictions from 2004.

She believes City authorities should have been looking for solutions to a looming water crisis back then when they had the chance.

“It was the year 2004 when the drought situation started. We saw the article in the Tatler in 2004 but other people in other areas didn’t. Then I went out on my lawn at 2am and I performed a rain dance. Then I still had my dogs with me, they were going crazy. The very next day it rained.”

She decided to do the dance after chatting to a friend in America who told her they were also having a drought and some people were dancing for rain.

“My family now believes in the dance and ask me to please do the dance. Others can do the dance anyway they like.

“Go out in nature and pray for rain or do what you want to do to make it come back again. If you believe it will happen, then it will happen.”

She believes more should be done to harvest rain when it does fall, such as collecting run-off from roads.

“We’ve had flash floods all the time in Pinelands, and I went to Wetton yesterday and the roads were flooded, I could barely walk. If catchment areas were created, we could’ve used this water.”

The City has imposed Level 5 water restrictions as dams remain critically low.

There is an 87 litres a day limit on all households with a ban on the use of all municipal drinking water for outside and non-essential purposes.

A Water Resilience Task Team has been created to find ways to reduce water consumption and augment the water supply system. And the City will spend R2 billion on new desalination, ground water extraction and water reuse plants.

The City did not respond to questions by deadline.