Friday, September 5, 2008

How to wash your hands

Washing your hands suddenly becomes a really big deal if you combine dealing with animals and doing without running water at the same time. Here's my system, to the left. At the top a paper dispenser, these are sold for almost nothing in order to goad consumers to use and buy even more paper than they would otherwise. Below is a kind of off-grid faucet, which this high-falutin' musher bought in Salekhard in western Siberia. Lots of people in Russia still live without running water, so they have a whole industry around containers to hang on the wall, with a rod fastened to a hole in the bottom. Push up the rod with the back of your hand, and water comes drizzling down. Very clever, as you eliminate using your infected, doughy mitts to soil taps or pumps or buckets.
At the bottom is simply a plastic bowl, the water is dumped into the grey water bucket I keep in the kitchen.
To the right is a three litre thermos with a pumping mechanism. This is my warm water tank, I boil up some water on the propane stove every now and then, it keeps pretty warm for up to a day and a night, depending on how much warm water I use.
At the bottom right are non-deodorized baby wipes, which can be used for almost anything.


Jørgen said...

Hello bush neighbor!
Do you happen to know any place other than Siberia too get a hold of this?

Northmark said...

You can probably get one in most hardware stores anywhere in the former Soviet Union, but do they have online shops? And I have no idea what the thingamajigs are called in English, much less in Russian. I have tried to think of ways to make one myself, the challenge is that the top of the rod, the one that slips into the container, ideally should be cone-shaped, with the narrow part pointing downwards, to prevent water from leaking out.