I’m all ready to go, having packed four columns
with charcoal ready to take the different water samples
– when Iain and Ellen arrive with their water
samples! But I have only a few hours in which to clean
the samples up, and this process, I know, is going to
take time. They have to percolate down the columns slowly
in order for the separation of impurities to take place.
By 4 pm it’s clear that I’m not going to
do it. This just isn’t going to work. In desperation,
I try forcing the liquids down the columns under pressure
in order to get at least something out at the bottom
that we can blind test. In the circumstances, I'm just
going to have to do the best I can in the short time
available (Producer's note: In the programme there wasn’t
time to show the clever pumping system that Mike used
to force water through the columns.)
In the end, things work out better than I expected.
Most of the dirty water samples have been cleaned up
quite dramatically, but only one – the solar still
water - passes Iain's blind-tasting test. It would have
worked much better if I’d had more time to work
on them. Not a good start to the series, but then again,
not entirely a total failure either.