Page:Guide to health.djvu/38

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26
A GUIDE TO HEALTH

Where the water issues from dirty places, we should not drink it at all; nor do we generally drink it. But we do not shrink from drinking the water which has been defiled by ourselves. River-water, for instance, is regarded as quite good for drinking, although we throw into it all sorts of rubbish, and also use it for washing purposes. We should make it a rule never to drink the water in which people bathe. The upper portion of the river should be set apart for drinking water, the lower being reserved for bathing and washing purposes. Where there is no such arrangement, it is a good practice to dig in the sand, and take drinking water therefrom. This water is very pure, since it has been filtered by passage through the sand. It is generally risky to drink well-water, for unless it is well protected, the dirty water at the top would trickle down into the well, and render the water impure. Further, birds and insects often fall into the water and die; sometimes birds build their nests inside the wells; and the dirt from the feet of those who draw water from the well is also washed down into the water. For all these reasons, we should be particularly careful in drinking well-water. If it should be pure, the tubs should be washed clean at frequent intervals, and should be kept covered; we should also see that the tank or