A cruise to Sudan would be incomplete without taking on a supply of fresh
water. You don't have to carry the water a great distance, because a
Sudanese "water truck" will bring it to you.
You simply take a stroll through the souq and talk to the waterman who will
arrange a time and place for delivery. You synchronize your watches, make a
few friendly gestures, and the deal is done. At the appointed time, the
donkey shows up pulling the water cart, and you fill your jugs with fresh
In this photo, David holds jugs that we picked up several months earlier in
Thailand, and we used those jugs to transport water to our boat.
The water truck consists of two 55 gallon drums welded together with a
spigot installed at the base. The cart's frame is constructed from welded
pipe joined to a scavenged car axle. Add one white donkey to pull the
contraption, and you are in the water business.
Buying water in Suakin is a trust exercise, because not all of the wells
have potable water. If you trust your waterman, then you pour the water
into your tanks. Some cruisers put the water in their tanks and others left
it in their jugs. We regarded the water as a backup supply mainly to be
used for showers and laundry.