Modern Marvels Taken for Granted: Hot Water

Ah! A hot shower in the morning when you first wake up or just before retiring. The pleasurable words conjures up steam on the mirror and jet sprays of heated warmth on your back. Adjust the shower head and go all out. Hot water creates images of luxurious pampering with the best scented soap and a free-for-all use of the most delicate shampoo on your scalp. You can stay in there forever, crooning a tune, listing to jazz, or just doing the reverse of chilling out. Thank the Lord for hot water systems and home filtration that gives us a soft regulated flow every time. What would we do without them?

Among the many modern marvels that are taken for granted, hot water is surely one of them. People actually used to heat up pans of the stuff on the stove and pour it into a portable tub. They would boil it to rid it of impurities before filtration crossed anyone’s lips. When a baby is born at home, someone screams “get some hot water.” Who knows why! When tea is desired, it must be made hot and steeped tout de suite. Hot water is a fundamental part of life that has immeasurable uses. We can’t even think of them, they are so obvious. But if you had to go without, you would know what they are!

Is hot water the basis of civilization? Those in the shower would say so. Those without would vote yes. But running water, not to mention hot, is definitely a jump up on a primitive well. It is a major improvement over the alternatives. Now we have electric heat pumps and instant tankless water heaters to do the vital job. It costs money to heat water so we know it is worth its weight in gold so to speak. It doesn’t come cheap or easy. A lot of people know as they upgrade to digital tankless units that are state of the art. A lot of new machining, welding, and assembly has gone into the process. More research and development is on its way.

You have heard the expression, “getting into hot water.” Is that a bad place to be? Perhaps yes and no. Metaphorically, you want to avoid such situations if you can, especially if they are not of your choosing. It means you are in trouble and need help. A husband with a roving eye is often in hot water. A child who has painted his bedroom walls with indelible ink is in hot water. On the other hand, a literal jump in a hot tub is a mighty fine thing indeed. We can riff on hot water endlessly, but you get the picture. We have your attention at the moment, so don’t wander off just yet .

What else has hot water done for you lately? It boils your eggs, heats baby bottles, washes dishes, helps you scrub yourself or your dog, and cleans your clothes. We already mentioned tea, so let’s add coffee and give a shout out to those marvelous self-heating units. The quicker the heating, the happier we are. No one likes to wait for mere essentials!

Anyone who has lost their electrical power in a storm knows what we are talking about. Try going for very long without hot water. Think about a tepid bath. Life is unattractive and grim. There are people who can’t survive without a least two cups of hot brewed morning coffee. Clothes never feel as clean when done in the cold cycle. While there is vichyssoise, no one likes cold tomato bisque or turkey noodle soup.

Stop taking hot water for granted and recognize it for the modern marvel that it is–modern here being loosely used since stoves have long been around. For eons, it has been helping everyone survive. I penned a little paean to its worth, with a little satire in mind.

Ode to Hot Water

Cool is nice, especially if you like ice, but hot is a welcome savior
Liquid gold in its converted form, has many uses to savor.

Heat it up to boiling point, that’s not a lot of palaver
It warms the cockles of your heart, inciting special behavior.

A hot tub beckons, so jump in now. It’s not a time to waver
Don’t turn away a hot cup of grog, full of rich rum flavor.

Take your tea tepid or piping, according to your favor
Enjoy the rapture down your throat, it will make you a raver.