During a dusty darty one afternoon, I drank from the Leith river. It left me bedridden for a week with a fever and a cold sweat. Every flush of the toilet was literally flushing down what miniscule amounts of energy and happiness I had left. Student health diagnosed me with ‘ruining your entire digestive system' disease. I was miserable about all but one thing: the memory of funneling water from the beautiful Leith river.
There wasn’t really any reason why I did it. Maybe, subconsciously, I was hoping that it would unlock forgotten knowledge from the students who had gazed upon the mighty Leith before me. I can’t remember what it tasted like. Since then I’ve been desperate to try more bodies of water on and near campus. I resisted.
Then, I informed my mummy that during school I had accidentally drank some bad water and that I had gotten sick. What followed was a concerned look and a trip to the store where she insisted on buying me one of those straws that you can use to drink water out of any poopy puddles and not get sick. Finally, my chance: I decided to take this straw and sample all the other watering holes Dunedin had to offer. I set out with a dream, my trusty straw, and a bottle of H2go as a chaser.
I began my journey with what I imagined to be the cleanest water in Dunedin: the white water by the Woodhaugh Gardens. Drinking water from here made me feel like I was in one of the ‘Pure New Zealand’ commercials. The beautiful scenery and crisp water made me feel at peace. The delicious and clean water made me forget about that .01% of poop that was said to get through the straw. 10/10
Wolf Harris Fountain in the Botans:
After the bathing seagulls fled, I scooped some water straight from the alligators mouth. The dead leaves in the water gave it a musty aroma. It kinda tasted healthy, like mineral water. Almost felt like it was good for me which was much appreciated. Nevertheless, there is no getting around the fact that it is a popular bird-bathing spot and it showed. 5/10
Botans Duck Pond:
I was greeted by many friends here; the feathered kind, the lovely members of the community, and all the voices in my head telling me to not do this. This water was brownish and smelled like poop and feet. It tasted like poop and feet. I felt as close as I have ever been to god. Still tasted really bad, though. 2/10
The water was taken right outside the Clocktower where the balls get stuck and rapids form. Fear coursed through my veins as I revisited the original water that made me sick. It was hard to drink, lots of flashbacks. Very metallic and prickly. It makes your mouth water in a bad way. It almost tasted electric and kinda burnt after, maybe because of all the lime scooters that were thrown in last year. If any of you have had Dasani water it's that bad. 3/10
I reached into the porcelaine with shaky hands. It tastes like pool water with lots of chlorine. Similar metallic taste to Leith Central. Tastes so clean that you probably wouldn’t even need this straw to drink it. Definitely would recommend it as it was refreshing and reminded me of the summer. Reminiscent of splashing that cold water on your face after a midnight library breakdown. 10/10
The atmosphere under the Forth Street Bridge felt harsh. There was a lot of pavement and moving cars. Overall the water had a mild, bland taste. I thought this water would be rich with the flavors of farm animal waste, road run off, fertilizers and scrumpy vomit, but was disappointed. The water was a muddy colour but had no real substance.This water was a let down. Personally, I like my water with an edge. 1/10
For those of you that haven't been to the Chinese Gardens it is a sight to see. The cherry blossoms there are blooming even in weather like this. The water here is still and clear. As I sunk my glass into the pond to collect some water I could see all the way down to the plants at the bottom. Even though this water had ducks, it tasted nothing like the duck pond. This water tasted sweet and clean. 9/10
I do not remember the last time I even saw this fountain running. Visually, this fountain is a gold mine - lots of colourful rubbish and earthy leaves. A rainbow mix of aromas, such as piss and vomit from the night before fill your lil nose. The water was slightly yellow in the glass. The taste was strong, kinda spicy and tingly with undertones of earthiness from the leaves. It tasted different from the others, very pungent. 7/10