Thailand

Getting Out of the Toilet

The Bathroom Foot handle

It’s been a minute since I’ve written about what goes on in the men’s room. But, I’m pretty sure you’ll find this just as fascinating as I did. This is a simple, but elegant hygiene advance.

It is a germaphobes dream, I’ve never seen it before. And, I think that it took COVID to bring it to us.  At least to Thailand.  I don’t know about the rest of the world.

Before I go on, let me first say that Thais are some of the cleanest people. Far cleaner than most people I know. I have very few qualms about eating off the street here. Choosing wisely, of course.  

It is astounding how clean people seem , given the set up of many public facilities, even in the higher end places.  A common arrangement is a sink with a single, cold water tap. Before March, soap was available about 60 percent of the time, often a greying bar sitting in the sink divot. A towel was, and continues to be, less of a fixture. Often missing, less often, it’s a well used terry towel on a hook. Sometimes, there’s a weak air dryer. More often it’s a roll of toilet paper, creating a pasty mess on contact with wet hands.  

The end results are two fold. Scores of people with wet hands grab and drip all over the door handles. And worse, many people don’t wash their hands at all, and inoculate the moistened door handles with whatever.

Which brings us to this contraption.  A foot handle that allows one to open the door with your toe, thus allowing restroom users the luxury of separating those who have not washed their hands from those who can’t dry their hands. It’s a cheap and novel solution. Everyone stays healthy and the landlord saves money by not spending money on towels or toilet paper.

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