Thursday, July 22, 2010

Heaven & Hell

On a more serious note, it is easy to take our toiletry for granted. It is easy to be amused by a funny sign in the restroom, because the restroom is going to be there, isn't it? But you know, try camping for a few days, and you'll get a lot more excited about indoor plumbing.

Heck, just last weekend, I went out river rafting and was glad to see a toilet when I returned - and that was just for a day! They even had permanent latrines at the landing site, but, well, you know, being in nature, I wanted to "connect with nature." But I digress...

It is interesting to me how many times I hear toilets, bathrooms, and their various accoutrements compared to "Heaven," while their lack, or malfunction can be compared to "Hell." A faulty plumbing system? Definitely Heck. A handheld bidet sprayer? Heaven, according to this guy.

But there really are people in the world (quite a lot of them) who do not have access to sanitation facilities, and this is actually quite a public health issue. It's the reason the World Toilet Organization exists. Might sounds like a funny name, but it's really not, when you think about it. You know how bad it is when you just "gotta go" and you can't find a restroom? What if that was your life? All day, every day. It would be quite different.

Agent HoJo also recently sent us this Blog Post about the toilet sanitation crisis in Mumbai. "Toilet Heaven" is a street corner with multiple double-decker toilet facilities. "Toilet Hell" is, well, just about everywhere else, apparently.

The fact that even our poorer citizens in the US can practically take toilets bathrooms and toilet paper all for granted shows just how wealthy a country we really are, even if we complain about lack of government services and economic downturn, etc., etc. I think possibly to much of the rest of the world, we look like a bunch of whining babies. Of course, we do have citizens who live on the street, who don't have access to adequate hygiene facilities. Living near San Francisco, I see it all the time. It's a pretty sad phenomenon.

So the next time you go to use a toilet, before you complain about the bad lighting or bunched up hand towels, or a lack of seat covers, take a moment to just be grateful. Be grateful that you *have* a toilet that is at least relatively comfortable. And think about someone who a is a little less fortunate.

{Photo courtesy the Polis Blog}

No comments: