My family and I need your prayers.
A month and a half ago, the huge water line to our street (about 2 city blocks long, on OUR side of the meter) ruptured, and leaked 177,700 gallons of water.
It flowed across the neighbor's front yard into his man-made lake. We didn't know about it until he found out about it and told us. There was no unnatural path of "green" in any of our yards or anything.
We believe it happened when the ground rapidly absorbed a ton of rainwater after another long drought. Our soil does that. The rapid expansion of the soil caused a mended pipe to lose its "mended" status.
We got our much-awaited and dreaded water bill a couple weeks ago -- $1624.00
Our normal water bill is $35 for our family of 8. Sometimes it goes as high as $55 during the drought months when I have to water 2 dozen trees.
The water company will only reduce it by 1/2, plus a small fee. So that leaves us with about $840 that we have to pay. They said they can't do any more than that -- it would require "Board approval". They will put it on a 12-month payment plan. So I can go into debt for this, and hope that nothing else happens in the next 12 months...
But that just means that for the next YEAR that's another $66.60 I have to earn to keep the utilities on. When money is already tight, that is very frustrating.
Here's the problem -- we're already dipping into our savings to pay our regular monthly expenses (which are already cut to the bone). And "savings" is a bit of a euphemism -- our savings are quite meager, and will only last us a few months until we're totally unable to pay our bills.
I was working for TAN Books until sometime this year -- see, I never officially got "the boot", so it's hard to say when it started. By July of this year I knew I needed another job. But I had found a small one-time "gig" working for someone in town, who was going to pay about $4,400 for a piece of software I was to write. Well I had been working on that, but now this client got cold feet and I've only received the first downpayment, even though I've done 1/2 to 2/3 of the work. He might still pay me another payment, but that hasn't happened yet.
So now I'm back to not having a paying job again. I'm willing and able to work, but the sad fact is that I'm between jobs right now. And an $840 water bill is most unwelcome!