Toilets and Showers

Being Clean When Cold

Being Clean When Cold
Katmandu Nepal Asia
Monday, January 8, 2007

I am not sure this is the life…

I am lying here in bed, all my clothes are on, it is cold and there is no electricity. The city of Katmandu has turned off the lights in this section of the city on Mondays for some reason, everyone says it will come back on at 7:30.

It takes a lot of work to stay comfortable at this time of year in Nepal, the weather is one small notch too cold. It is not cold enough where so that everyone installs furnaces and heats their home, it I just cool enough that for sure you wish you did. Many person can be seen sitting on the roofs of their brick homes during the day, staying warm and soaking in the sun.

I have been debating in my mind about the hands of the street vender selling me popcorn. Their hands are dirty, maybe it is the color of their skin, but 50/50 on this, some have very dirty hands and fingers.

I was watching the movie, - The Aviator - about Howard Hughes. Howard in the movie had this phobia or problem with dirt. I remember his face as he was squeamish to touch the handle of the door. I felt the exact same way as I was watching a man cup popcorn with his hands into the cup to measure my portion. I got this low, deep in the stomach, my arms felt heavy, why do his fingers looks so dirty feeling.

We are just upstream from India, where I feel live some of the dirtiest people on the planet, so there is a cultural influence. However, Nepal is cleaner than India.

I am thinking the cold makes them resist cleaning, it like being in Tibet or China and seeing their hands, but a lot less severe.

So whether their hands are always dirty, or they are just temporarily more dirty because the water is too cold to shower easy is my question.

Being Clean When Cold

Solar Cooker Kathmandu Katmandu

Solar Cooker Kathmandu Katmandu
Kathmandu Nepal Asia
Sunday January 28, 2007

Things happen for a reason, I am not sure why I believe this, yet I do.

I tried to book a flight from Kathmandu, Nepal to Delhi, India, for some reason there was no flights on Saturday, and I was on a waiting list for Sunday. I have an open ticket with Royal Air Nepal, I purchased in Bangkok, Thailand, therefore, I just need to find a seat, and reserve it.

Hard to understand all the problems here, in the end, I think the culture has trouble embracing the idea that you can be honest, make a good product, and it can sell. They believe making dishonest copies of North Face, Lowe Alpine, Mamut or any brand that trips the trigger of the backpackers is a better way of making a living. I believe 99 percent of the products sold in Katmandu are copies.

While my frustration levels was peaking on many levels, my friend Chris back in Idaho, USA was staying the course. He sent me a couple of emails about Solar Cookers, and reminded me of my own photos.

He found a place to buy a solar cooker online. I was delayed enough by my flights, that I reconsidered and am staying long enough to find the solar cooker, if possible.

This photo was taken in the city of Gyantse in Tibet China, behind the Friendship Hotel as best I can tell from my own web site. Jeff and me stayed in the Cheap Rooms, while the five Star folks got abused living in the closed Friendship Hotel. We had plenty of blankets and they did not.

My personal belief about solar energy is most people promoting it are fools. For the world to utilize solar energy first of all it has to work or function, then it has to be affordable by the masses, not just the enthusiast, who love gadgets like me.

Many Hotels in Katmandu have solar heated water systems and on about a 100 percent kill rate, they do not work adequate. The fail to be adequate 100 percent of the time.

I was listening to a good understanding of one Hotel about a person taking a shower in the afternoon to utilize the Solar Heated Water. I said, that Hotel has a large Electric water heater also, you can take a shower about anytime, and your problem is you need to wait for 15 gallons of water to be pumped from the first floor to the fifth floor before it will become hot. Therefore, more or less you need to let the water run for about 5 to 10 minutes to get a shower.

Therefore you have hot water, however, then cause another problem by wasting water.

I have now changed hotels three times; the one he was in has the best system to get a hot shower, and all three of them you need to wait 10 minutes and waste 15 gallons of water to get a shower. Katmandu has a shortage of water in addition to a shortage of electricity; they have few things up to adequate.

There are very few things done correctly here, however this is normal in 80 percent of the planet and in my opinion why they do not have any money. Hard to make money selling junk products and junk services, the buyers beat them to death to get a cheap price, because in the end they buy price, not quality.

I believe the real truth about Solar Hot Water in Katmandu, is not about giving us Hot Water, it is marketing. They want to say, yes, we have Hot Water; they do not want to give us Hot Water.

This is an on demand type of Hot Water Heater; they are available in most countries of South and Central America. If you took and combined the Solar Heated water of Nepal and this on demand Electric Hot Water heater of South America, you would have a system that would work closer to adequate.

This is an on demand gas water heater in Bogotá, Colombia, works very good in a way, if you have a common shower and not a private shower. I suppose true energy conservation is by having one common shower in the hotel and not having private showers. Then have only dip showers as they utilize about half the water. There is also a model like this, yet is electric and very common in Southeast Asia.

This is my filling up my 4-gallon bucket I carry in my bag with hot water to take a dip shower. If the Hotel has hot water, I put about one gallon of water in the bucket, then take a shower. If for normal, reasons and they do often, run out of water while I am lathered up, I finish my shower with the water in the bucket or finish by dip. I also can take sub-adequate solar heated water and finish heating with a one-cup coffee cooker purchased in Bolivia.

The art of travel is not just toughing it, the art of travel it to use the God given brain you have to adapt.

If the NGO of the planet, would combine all these in one location, and had a clue, they could triple the number of tourist in Nepal, and adaptthese sub-adequate services into adequate services.

While being very frustrated with Nepal, Chris has reminded me to track down cheap hot water cookers in Katmandu, I am on the trail, and maybe they have a less than 20 dollars cooker, which I could sell at cost and ship to the rest of the planet.

This is not rocket science, it is common sense. In truth, everyone is always reinventing the wheel, the technologies exist to live great, people just do not know about these things and utilize in one place. All the answers are scattered all over the planet.

Solar Cooker Kathmandu Katmandu

Pokjara Nepal Hot Water Solar

Pokjara Nepal Hot Water Solar
Pokjara Nepal Asia
February 4, 2007

I went up on the roof of my hotel, trying to see the lake, the clouds have it covered, however I got a good look at their solar hot water system, that serves up cold water... hehehe

I am presently at one level above, there are two large water tanks where I am standing to take this photo. They pump the water up to the holding tanks, then gravity allows it to flow through this hot water solar device below.

On the left of a the tank is a heating element, and I guess in a very inefficient way it heat the water when there is no sun. (It is not plugged in, ergo the reason for no hot water.)

There appears to be no insulation on the tank, I think so the sun can warm the tank. This is made of galvanized steel, and would reflect most of the sun, however would get warm. I do not understand why they did not just use the big cheap and common black plastic tanks. There are electric hot water heaters you can hang in the water.

It goes through this and I think straight to the rooms, I will look, but I do think there is an insulated holding area.

Notheless, I heated up water with my one-cup cooker and took a shower, so I am good to go, I will nose around and see if the other guests take showers.

The man said this cost about 60,000 Rupees, or about 900 US dollars for this, I think there is about 200 dollars in materials max.

Nothing is complicated about this set up.

Pokjara Nepal Hot Water Solar

Conserve Electricity Dip Shower

Conserve Electricity Dip Shower
Pokjara, Nepal Asia
February 7, 2207

I have never thought of myself as a person that conserves energy unless I was trying to save money. I am more than willing to use extreme amounts of Electricity for my personal pleasure.

I am a practical person though, common sense, and just good old Indiana Horse sense. I look for the obviously good solution to problems.

I am lazy in a way, I think a good invention or idea needs a bit of laziness to empathize with the normal person, who is often more lazy than me.

I want my Travelers Nest, I want my room design, my creature comforts, my personal list of needs fulfilled anywhere on the planet, so as time has passed I have learned, invented, found, created work arounds for solutions to problems.

Heating water in Benin, Africa with an immersion electric water heater, this takes about 15-30 minutes. I purchased in Bolivia this thingy, and I think thingy is a word, however you can buy an on the edge of tank type in most countries on planet.

This is my system to heat water; it is my way of guaranteeing the greed of the Hotel owner does not stop me from taking a Hot Shower. Sometimes it is just plain stupidity on the part of the Hotel owner that stops me from getting a hot shower.

The reasons why a person cannot get a hot water shower are so numerous it is a never-ending list.

The normal reason and the present reason here in Nepal are because the owner does not turn on the electric heater. The want you to believe the Solar system works on cloudy days. I was laughing in Bolivia one time, there was three switches that needed turned on to use the nozzle head type heater in the shower.

(Note, a solar shower is normally on good in the late afternoon.)

Other reasons:
- Their system is broken
- There is no hot water handle
- The electricity is off
- The have one 40 gallon hot water tank for 50 people
- The hotel has no hot water ever
- They ran out of propane gas
- They have solar heating, yet they have no sun
- The solar heated system means they have the water tank on the roof, as does most of the world.

However, I realized I am conserving electricity here in Nepal, and water. The other night two Brit girls requested the owner turn on the electricity so the water tank would heat. I thought, you have 15 minutes before lights out because of some crazy Nepal Electricity saving program called - Low Setting - or - Load Shading - or Load Shedding, - nonetheless they shut the lights off at 6-9 PM some days and in a random way, not way of knowing for sure.

15 Minutes is not enough time to hear 100 gallons of water.

However… I was thinking, they wanted the man to turn on the electricity for a tank of water on the roof that is about 100-200 gallons of water. This is a lot of water, and then they need to heat the water for about three floors of pipes leading to the bottom floor. The amount of water needed to take a shower was in excess of 100 gallons, then I have tested, it take 10 gallons of water running through the pipes before the hot water reaches the first floor from the top floor.

In the above system, I take a dip shower, it require from two gallons to about 4.5 gallons when I really want a great shower. With 4.5 gallons heated with the immersion water heater, I can even put conditioner on my hair and have enough water to rinse. I also use less soap, so I have less soap to rinse out of my hair.

Therefore, in my desire to have a hot water shower in my Travelers Nest, I have discovered I am saving water and electricity. Now, I do not feel so impelled to hide all these toys from the Hotel owner.

I purchased what was a large 5-gallon juice container in Cotonou, Benin and cut it off, after my plastic gas can from Thailand seams broke when I was trying to cook canned vegetables in hot water, a failed idea, in two ways. The normal NEW gas or petrol as the Brits say plastic 5 gallon can work good cut off and put in bag. Put duct tape on the edges or they will cut the material of the bag.

I buy abroad, because I can pay 50 cents US to have them cut this very durable plastic.

Note, there is nothing new about this sytem for me, I have been doing for about 4 - 6 years, not sure...

Conserve Electricity Dip Shower

Mopping the Shower

Mopping the Shower
Lome, Togo West Africa
Monday, February 26, 2007

The floor to my shower was too much, I have not had to do this in a long time. I used to perform this task regularly in the Hotel rooms in India. I took some laundry detergent, sprinkled it over the floor to the shower and then happened to find a short brush broom, I then scrubbed down the floor and walls to the shower.

I do not know, I think it normal, I see many Hotels use the same mop over and over and never rinse. The idea of a good scrub and rinse is something that evade them.

In the end this is the owner of the Hotel who sets the standards or lack of standards. I am not in the cheap Hotel, I am in one owned by a French Foreigner.

This is not a Togo problem, it is a problem in the majority of family run hotels in the world.

Mopping the Shower

Five Shower Day

Five Shower Day
Lome, Togo West Africa
Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Today is a five shower day in Lome, it has been a difficult and hot day as the electricity went off around 9:00 AM and finally returned about 4:00 PM. There was no fan in my Hotel room.

On a normal day, I probably take three refresher showers, today is was five and nothing worked as the room was stuffy, hot, no air moving and I could not get my body dried.

Modern World
In some ways, I blame this on the modern world, my present room and most rooms of West Africa seemed designed only for fans and air conditioning. I think of the transoms above doorways in the USA in older homes, those small rectangular windows. They are now often sealed and nailed shut, forced to not work, in many way silly. Heat rises and this allowed cross flow ventilation in the home. And then also a person would lower the top of a two part window and also open the bottom, allowing the cool air to enter and the hot to exit.

Here I am in a concrete box room with one window and no breeze capable of entering or leaving the room, there is huge security wall in this compound structure and I am in a first floor room. If there was a second floor, I would try to move up and catch the breezes from the ocean. We are far, maybe 10 blocks from the ocean, yet this would help.

The modern rooms are no longer designed for fresh air, with proper windows, transoms, cross flow ventilation, they are designed for electricity and fans. However, the electricity is not dependable, therefore, hard to say we are advancing, in a way the mind has slowly disengaged. No longer taking into consideration the reality, and living only by what is given us.

The room is hot, even with he fan it does not work good, I have figure a way to put the fan in the bottom of the window whereby I can suck or push the air in our out from the bottom and in the night cool the room properly, and the hot air is either pushed out or the cold air is sucked in.

Five Shower Day

Travelers Mouthwash

Travelers Mouthwash
Kpalime, Togo West Africa
Monday, April 2, 2007

I have had more or less a paranoid case of bad breath worries. I woke the other morning with a mouth taste that would not say goodbye. Brushed my teeth many times, swooshed the water this way, that way and tried my best.

Then decide, time to floss again.

I think the problem was this, I flossed the day before, and in a hurried, too aggressive way, I pushed down and made my gums bleed. When I flossed, again, this area told me, I am the culprit; this is where the smell resides, lives and is you worry.

There is dried or bad blood.

Baking Soda brushing, purchased some new toothpaste, finally went to a pharmacist to buy mouthwash. This is difficult stuff to buy in West Africa and it is not because there is not a good need.

4500 CFA for the first bottle - 9 U.S. Dollars.
3300 CFA for the next in line. - 6.4 U.S. Dollars.

Something African here, they will not show you or even admit cheaper exist, until you say no to expensive. It takes a long time to work you way to down to cheap and proper price hotel room, you must take a tour of the complete hotel.

500 CFA is about 1 US Dollar.

I said no, and went back home to search on the internet, learning that alcohol in the mouthwash dries my mouth and is not good.

I do everything wrong, coffee, dieting, cheese, I do not have good mirrors so I do not brush good, I like to see myself when I brush. Peanuts, Popcorn, every food that is perfect to set up home in my teeth, I eat.

Look across the street from the Pharmacist at some lemons, they was the super baby size, not big enough for prime time TV. Sometimes, I buy lemons and just cut one in two, bite, suck, and my mouth gets some type of citric acid clean. I think it will clean off a penny.

Baking Powder
Toothpaste Rinsing: Taking my toothpaste and pretending it is mouthwash.

I gave up today, paranoia is growing stronger, and brushing my teeth 10 times per day makes me nervous about myself. I went today and purchased some Hydrogen Peroxide.

The first pharmacy and the five workers FIVE were out to lunch mentally. I wrote Peroxide, then Hydrogen Peroxide, then went to H2O, the to 03 or the little 3, not like I typed.

Said it in Spanish, converted to French.
L’eau Oxigenateur.
Agua Oxigenado en Espanol.

I am saying, no need to spell good.

I gave up, did not say Merci, I wanted Mercy, this was too crazy, and a full on formal pharmacy and I cannot get Peroxide to use as mouthwash.

Said, to a Moto Taxi, see this sign, it says Pharmacie, I want another one, take me, he takes me down the street, and down to the corner and there is a pharmacy.

I ask everyone; (3 Men, one women here) showed them a piece of paper with written on it, H20 and 03 and Peroxide, and Hydrogen Peroxide. I then say,

A women, the only women, I do believe they are smarter than men, engaged here brain into first gear, finds a bottle of Eau Oxygenee.

This cost 900 CFA or about 2 USA Dollars and is powerful and cleans, and works, and it usually cheaper than mouthwash needed in West Africa.

I ask her, the women, are you the Pharmacist. She says no, and points at the man, I say in English.
- I am worried about you. -

Then I say,
- Tout L Monde, la femme est intelligence., et l-homme es mal. -

I hope she understood as this, in the entire world, the women are educated and the men are not. Culturally, the men somehow learn to sit and talk, and the women learn how to work. Now, in school, this is giving the women tired of the men drinking and carousing a huge advantage, they study and apply themselves.

Being big, and bad, does not stop intelligence from conquering the world, and the women are taking over the planet while the men go and watch football and drink beer.

The Medicines and Pharmacies, the true place where a person is going to start finding solutions to problems is crazy here in Africa. The price of medicines in Africa is double of South America, I think triple of Asia, and the French Colonies are the poorest on the planet….


I really like my lemon solution, yet I think the sugar in a lemon kills and advantage of taste.

I am still brushing my teeth and tongue and cheeks and scrub and so on and so forth in an obsessive, compulsive let discover a new problem way.
Travelers Mouthwash

Kpalime Togo Croix Rouge

Kpalime Togo Croix Rouge
Red Cross Kpalime Togo

Applaud, claps and yippee, a good start for the Togo Red Cross or Croix Rouge in the French Language. I told myself, not to think about the NGO-ONG lack of doing anything worth a darn, and I found a loophole in my own rules. I guess I can encourage by finding a couple of things they have started to do right.

This is the ONE trash bin, close to the Post Office on one of the main streets of Kpalime, Togo, just down the street from the big Fan Milk distribution shop. I have found only one, but it is a good idea.

Some people that have read my ramblings and allowed me to annoy them for years may recall or remember me commenting that we need to send a deluge of trash cans to the developing world.

I could take a photo of the disgusting stream or the water ditch that runs right through the center of the main market. However, what is the point; it looks like any ditch in any city on 80 percent of the planet. The developed world as they say is small in my view, about 20 percent, while the developing, under-developed, etc and so forth dominate as the 80 percent.

I think a deluge means bucket of water coming down, it was door number 2.

DELUGE defined:
2. vast quantity: an overwhelming amount of something

I think the USA should send millions, maybe billions of plastic trash barrels to every country on the planet. Then put a very small, not big, barely noticeable label saying. A gift from the people of the United States of America. Then the words - Trash Disposal - in the local language also, however a s huge label.

I want an overwhelming amount distributed, you cannot give, the governments would sell them to their people. Then after they have loaded them up with fish, carried water in them, used for tables, hauled grain in them, what can be left over is an over-abundance of trashcans, because it has to be overwhelming.

The bottom line in life is this, the world, including the USA people are enormously lazy, what is easy to do, they do, there can be no obstacle or they give up easy. IF there is trash can close, then the world will use it, but if it require work, then no. I personally throw my trash on the ground in the world all the time, it is ridiculous, the world is being unreasonable, give me the can.

I would like to can a few of the United Nations people to help save the world.

Ain’t that an euphemism?

This Toilet is up the hill from the main market, past the central Gare or small bus and bush taxi station. It is on the right as you head towards the Sunday - Tuesday market area.

Ok, I do not think this toilet is quite in the needed location, and one trashcan in the city is not going to keep the city clean. However, this is a good start. As long as nobody says, quit urinating on the walls, I assume the world will continue to urinate when they think about it, as always, anywhere and everywhere.

Thanks to the Togo Red Cross for starting along the correct path, when I do not see a person urinating 25 times per day, I will know the toilet project is working. When I do not see the central water stream or ditch running down the center of the main market not full of trash and looking like a sewer, I will know the trashcan idea is working.

Send Trash Cans, a deluge.

By the way, I throw trash on the ground all the time. I think since I have adopted this idea, my life has become 10 percent happier. The constant search, carrying trash in my pocket, was like carrying a continual reminder of dirt. It does not feel good to be the only one looking for a trash can, while 80 percent of the planet is just throwing trash anywhere. I now figure, that is the way they want, that is the way they get it.

This all falls under one rule of mine, the job of management is not to manage, it is to remove the obstacles to production.

Africa is clean compared to India. South America is about the same, and hard to say in Asia, cluttered with people, but the need is there about the same or more than Africa. Africa is clean, big, open area, not really many people.

Kpalime Togo Croix Rouge

Travel Shower or Electricity

Travel Shower or Electricity
Lome, Togo West Africa
Thursday, April 19, 2007

I was thinking, maybe I am also empathy impaired as I was mentioning about people.

I have solved many problems in my travels, that plague travelers and tourist. One of the major ones I solved a couple of years ago was the shower, how to get a shower in a place like India or Nepal, or even Europe when there is a major problem with either water or hot water.

I carry this bucket, I now have two, because I purchased another 5 gallon juice container and had them cut it off in Kpalime. I now have two of them with me. I use a one-cup coffee heater to heat when in cold climates, both ways, I take dip showers.

I can fill them up and have in my room close to 8 gallons of water to use for a dip shower. The fixer Michael appreciated the buckets on two occasions, one was when I filled up one with water so we had drinking water. The other was when he was worried about breaking his radio, I put inside the bucket, inside the backpack and it create a hard inside protection. It is really like having a hard pack, but I can remove the hard liner.

I am dwelling on my Electricity problems, I am sure one day, I will solve them and I will look back, and not talk about the problems of electricity.

Africa has exceptionally good water supply, the water is clean, good for drinking. However, it would be easy to think there is a water problem, as a person can see people carrying water all times of the day. I am guessing and I will ask some travelers, if they believe Africa has a water problem. I would think they would say yes, and up near the Sahara there is a problem.

The cost of a big tub of water cost money here, and this is different than most countries. But that is because they have public utility water and cleaner. Free bad water or possible to be bad is free. However, they must carry the water to their homes as there is no water lines to the house, and even if they was, they would all be broken, like in Mexico or Asia and they are just sucking in the bad water to the home.

This water is good, but you have to plan ahead, I do not remember having water problems in West Africa.

I have continually problems here in Togo with Electricity, I have started to work on my computer the minute I have electricity, because I cannot guarantee it will return. Plus, the batteries of Laptops to me are still just an annoying joke, meant to allow you to take notes, and shut off, not for real working.

My only prospect right now for continually electricity is this wind up light I have, it is great. It generates enough juice to stay on low all night. I have finally figured out, I need to sit and wind for about 5 minutes to really do good.

I will write Chris and see if he knows of a foot pedal type light as this hand wind up time is annoying and difficult to use for a good charge. If the power went into the computer, then I would have something, hmm, maybe I can wire up this 12 volt solar pad to charge my computer.

I figure it out, what I need is a splitter. I need a splitter that allow the cord entering my computer to either be charging from the 220 electricity or from the solar power pad. I could then plug in the solar pad to the computer, put out the window and hope nobody steals it.

What happens is this, I am in a room with Electricity, I am charging my computer. Most of the time in the room, it is plugged into the wall socket or the light bulb adapters thingy.

Then the electricity goes off, if for any reason, I leave the computer on, it will drain the battery. The hibernation feature causes me more headaches than benefits, as I lose information as it does not function correctly or I do not know how to use correctly and cannot be bothered to learn.

I have learned to turn off my computer in Africa, so not a problem.

Yes, I am charging my battery, it is plugged in, I want to know, I have 2 hours of work time. If I went to back to the border of Togo and Ghana, I could live in a room with no electricity and type away every morning for two hours. I am not sure, I think I am on the computer about 2-3 hours per day, and some days up to 5, but never really more.

Well, now I need this female plug that enter the computer to charge the battery to the computer. How will I find that? This is not so easy, there is not laptops in West Africa just hanging around and the cords to a laptop would be even more difficult to find. I can splice into the present cord and connect, yet I am not sure, this may be one of them coaxial type wound cords. I need to be 100 percent sure what type of electrical cords before I go an cut it up to connect a solar panel.

I am having trouble with electrical tape. I need to find some duct tape, to cover or use outside the electrical tape. The regular black electrical tape is having troubles. It gets hot, and start to unwind, as long as cool or cold, not a problem, but here in Africa, I am having problems. I think I can wrap up connections and then wrap with duct tape and it will hold. I will check, they do not cover up the connection here the way you would think. Duct tape is difficult to buy in many countries, not a normal on the shelf items on the planet, and very heavy to carry, I will check to see if I have a partial roll.

Travel Shower or Electricity

Cultural Stages of Togo Homes

Cultural Stages of Togo Homes
Amlame, Togo West Africa
Tuesday, April 24, 2007

All photos were taken in the Village of Danyi Apeyeme, Togo West Africa, on the Danyi Plateau, about 50 Kilometers North and West of Kpalime.

I would observe and think this home is very old. Take a very close look and you will see a wooden water container with a lid, I am 95 percent, sure, it is not to make Fufu as they look about the same. Cooking is done under the eave of the home. There is the absolute minimal amount of home. The roof is grass. No screens, I am not sure about the bars on the windows, maybe there is not window. I have observed home with a series of 3 to 10 single entrance doors in some countries. I am thinking to make the most amount of air, you need this type of construction, and you want the whole wall to open. I think having doors all the way around the home would give the most amount of ventilation, and then have screens on the door openings. Then only use one for ingress, egress. The problem with a building is air, but it protects you from the elements, animals not so good on mosquitoes.

This photo taken in Danyi, Apeyeme is on the way down to the river, behind the small market where they drink that brew of alcohol.

This home has a steel roof, the wall are still clay adobe, yet hey have made a plaster effect. The water is collected by a gutter into a 55-gallon steel container. The building to the right I the kitchen, now under roof and safe from rain. The window have wood shutter, behind the shutter are bard made of rebar used inside concrete slabs to make strong.

Between the kitchens are the shower and the toilet. I took photos of this toilet, a unique, but very practical and pragmatic design. I think I will post it.

Danyi Apeyeme, Togo West Africa
Home Stay coordinates - Michel and Jane are the Owners
Saturday, April 21, 2007
07 degrees 12.203 North
000 degrees 41.452 East
795 Meters of altitude above sea level

This is not the most modern here, by a long shot; there are luxury homes that would make any USA person jealous. Complete with servants, living quarters and a gardener, I always say, you can tell how rich a person is… Do they have a bodyguard?

Ok, this home is probably concreted; the bars are now on the outside and placed into the wall. There is maybe louvered windows, and screens on the windows.

The porch is luxury, and the size is luxury, I would think they have a shower area around back and who knows for toilet.

This photo was taken in Danyi, Apeyme, Togo up the hill from the middle picture, or the GPS coordinates.

The village has a water tower, however, I do not think they use, good drinking water is free here, and I do not think they could get people to pay, they would just walk and get water and skip the pay idea. This is just a guess, I see nobody using the inside water in the village of

Danyi Apeyeme, Togo West Africa
Home Stay coordinates - Michel and Jane are the Owners
Saturday, April 21, 2007
07 degrees 12.203 North
000 degrees 41.452 East
795 Meters of altitude above sea level

From an architectural, culture point of view, this small city was great. Danyi Apeyeme, Togo West Africa is small enough to still use typical water gathering methods from the river, has just installed electricity, has a water tower, but seems to be not be used. In one small region of this country, in one small trek you can see all this in one hour. The river, the building, the construction methods. There are all layers of the culture in one area to view and try to understand or not understand, but muse.

Architecture, Togo Architecture, West Africa Architecture, Culture West Africa, Culture, Construction, Water, Toilets and Showers,

Cultural Stages of Togo Homes

Room Feels 10 Degrees Cooler

Room Feels 10 Degrees Cooler
Atakpame, Togo West Africa
Friday, April 27, 2007

I am NOT sensitive to heat, or I would not spend most of the last 10 years in Tropical Countries.

However, I am the same as anyone, I like to stay cool. I have hit some wall here in Togo because the rooms are modern, and designed to use electricity either for fans or AC. They electricity has gone off a lot, and a good room with electricity, becomes a terrible room without electricity.

I am in a room in l’Amities Hotel, number 102, the room has NO toilet or shower inside. I was considering this when in the Auberge Mandela in Kpalime. There was always water in the Auberget Mandela, the room was moist, sometimes when I walked in, I could feel the water from the shower.

This room feels cooler, there is no water in the room, less bugs, and the room is more comfortable, because the shower and toilet is not in the room.
Humidity makes the world feel hotter.

Room Feels 10 Degrees Cooler

Togo 2nd Worst Toilet Design

Togo 2nd Worst Toilet Design
Atakpame, Togo West Africa
Saturday, May 5, 2007

I am nominating this toilet design as my present choice for Second Worst Toilet Design on the Planet Earth.

This toilet is located in the

Atakpame, Togo West Africa
Hotel de l’Amities
3000 CFA for Private room with Shared Bath
GPS reading taken April 25, 2007
07 degrees 31.315 North
001 degrees 08.952 East
297 Meters of altitude above sea level

This toilet does not function properly as a toilet. This toilet fails to accomplish many goals of a toilet connected to public water supply. This toilet is connected to the city water.

The goal of a toilet is to flush away or slowly wash away any human excretion or other debris. The way this toilet is designed, the water does not wash the bowl of the toilet, anything to the front of the bowl whether urine of feces remains, because the water does not wash the bowl. The second goal of a toilet connect to water is to wash or flush all excretions past a trap or water catch, then the fresh water replaces the dirty water, and create a fresh water buffer between the sewer gases and the toilet area, this is not accomplished either. The water does run, but it does not wash away, is jut runs slowly and half cleanses. The water is not fresh water or the water is not replaced.

Being that there is the idea that if your turn the handle, start the water running and it will clean the bowl and this does not happen, this entitles this toilet to be my second worst toilet design on the planet. Please do not confuse this with being the worst toilets, the worst toilet without long introspection are in Mexico, whereby some hostels even advertise they have toilet seats to attract clients.

The First place contender is in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia or maybe Ulan Batar, as you wish, the Hostel I was in there is my number one choice for worst toilet design.

Note, that fortunately the toilet was not used much in the Hotel l’Amities, and the staff would clean it regularly, under heavy use this toilet would be a problem child.

Note, man toilets are of simpler design and require a bucket flush, if this toilet removed the water supplied to the toilet by public water supply and gave a bucket of water, it would not qualify as the second worst design on the planet for toilet design. The installation of the water into the toilet and not functioning as the goal of toilet desing, sort of a false hope, and African Almost make this a contender.

Toilets and Showers, Worst - Best, Worst Toilet, Togo,

Togo 2nd Worst Toilet Design

Togo Has Good Showers

Togo Has Good Showers
Badou, Togo West Africa
Saturday, May 5, 2007

I think a shower is invigorating, especially in Togo.

This is a friend, she invited me to her home and I met the extended family and half the neighborhood.

She wanted to accompany me to the Cascade Akloa or the Waterfalls about a 500 CFA, 1-dollar USA, by Moto ride from here. She says to wait, puts a chair in the shade, I sit down and she fetches a bucket of water, puts on this wrap around ballooning dress they wear and enter the shower area, then put up the curtain.

Showers are invigorating.

This shower is located just to the side of the road, and the shower drains in the open storm drain. A good location and good water management. Sometimes these showers are located down the hill from my hotel, I am positive the Togo people or at least the women and children shower very well.

I was actually admiring the shower, I think the location, when this boy whips it out and lets it fly. He is just to the left of the shower and the shower is now downhill from him. If your camera does not power up fast, you will totally miss the photo. If the Sony 12 X had been one second faster, the waterfalls would have been here.

I sometime holler at the men, hey, do not P up hill as I see them do sometimes, at least this young man was smart, he understood water flows down hill.

I for one second, thought, I will go and see where this boy urine is flowing, then I thought,
- No, this is an invigorating shower; I do not want to disturb my imagination. -

Many people think of Africa as primitive, I sort of think of it as more natural. Strangely, the hotels in Africa are some of the best on the planet for backpacker grade. I really am living the good life.

Togo Girls, Girls, Toilets and Showers, Togo, Shower,

Togo Has Good Showers

West Africa Pump Toilet

West Africa Pump Toilet
Accra, Ghana West Africa
Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Who to blame it on, the French or the English, maybe the Dutch, I am sure hoping it is not the Germans, I keep using them as the example of strict in the world. I wish I could blame it on the Africans, however, as best I can figure few inventions or new gadgets come from West Africa, maybe down in South Africa.

The Pump Toilet

Thank you to an Accra Ghana Hotel for the opportunity to take a photo of a Pump Toilet. This is not a normal push and it flushes toilet, it is better if you give it about five pumps and it works better.

Intermittently in West Africa, I have had this type of flush system in the toilets of the countries of West Africa. I am not above taking off the top of a toilet to make the sucker work, I make them work. Which is a real benefit here in this shared toilet hotel in Accra, Ghana. I do not work to take photos of toilets, they just expose themselves too often and I am in the right place at the right time. This toilet is in a shared toilet, and there is NO top on the toilet, it took zero work, the lighting was good, the situation was there, so I took the photo.

I am a mechanical whiz kid, which is real benefit in a world where 95 percent of hotels do not have maintenance men. When I see a maintenance woman, I will use the politically correct expression.

What you need to know, is if one push doe not work, try pumping repeatedly and it will flush. Elaine a Togo Hotel cleaning girl showed me how to pump by pulling a wire in Lome, I wanted to give her bran a nudge and say,
- Toilets should not need instructors after age five -

West Africa Pump Toilet

The Shower Step

The Shower Step
Accra, Ghana West Africa
Monday, August 20, 2007

This is a photos of a very nice common shower and toilet in Accra, Ghana in a Hotel.

I have learned my walking lessons too many times. This is a very nice ceramic tile, and there is a step down from the shower to the floor level. I have slipped many times on tile, inside a hotel, or outside in the streets. When I see this type of tile associated with water I become afraid. When I see a step, I become more wary, I am not sure of an solution, except to be super careful when choosing rooms or when you spot the potential danger.

Generally hotels built to be a hotel are a lot safer than homes or buildings converted to hotels. A room that has added the shower by raising the floor to allow for water and drain pipes also creates a danger.

The larger the hotel, the more likely it was built as a hotel, the more like a home, and the more they make these work around situations. The Hilton is safer than a bed and breakfast or mom and pop hotel.

The Shower Step

No Hollywood Showers

No Hollywood Showers
That is some advice, I refuse to follow. I was thinking about my dip shower, where I take a dipper and pour water over my head. This is very eco-friendly, or at least this uses about a third of the water of a normal shower.

Bangkok, Thailand Southeast Asia
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Andy of

50 percent of my showers are dip showers; I never get a good Hollywood Shower or as Tom Clancy taught me in the book the Hunt for Red October. I normally get cold showers. I believe cold shower are very unhealthy, I believe that a very hot shower is the best thing that every disinfected a body on the planet. Hot water to wash dishes, hot water to bath, hot water to clean clothes. This in my opinion kills them little things I do not understand.

40-70 percent of the world takes cold showers, washes dishes in cold water, and washes clothes in cold water.

However, anyway you do it, a Hollywood Shower is not hug a tree, save the planet, stop the Kyoto people from harping too much. I know that the energy use of a Hot Water heater in the home is about 10-25 percent of the house energy use…

However, for me, I want to take that Hollywood shower, that

Submit URL for Hotel or maybe Contact Andy

No Hollywood Showers

Why the Hot Water does not work in Hotel

Why the Hot Water does not work in Hotel
A video that answer the mysterious question.
- Why doe my Hotel say I have Hot Water, however, there is no hot water. A video explaining how to use the on demand hot water system to have the hot shower we thought we paid for.
Philippines - Southeast Asia
Monday, December 17, 2007
Andy of ---
Tell the truth, admit it, those cold-water shower in the tropics were not fun.

On demand hot water system, common in the normal world, the 80 percent of the planet that is not USA and Europe.

There is one handle, which handle also controls the heat of the water.

Turn up the water, makes it get cold, turning it down makes it hot

If the light goes off, the electricity goes off, therefore no hot water.

The slower the water goes through the water line, the warmer the water.

Sometimes owners put two or three switches to stop you from having a Hot Water shower, in Bolivia, I needed to have them turn the switch on at the desk, and often I have to turn on the breaker switch.

Getting a tow-along-Philippine-girl to show you how this works probably will not work, I doubt they have a shower or hot water at home. They could probably show you how to user the dipper that replaces toilet paper though.

57 Meg wmv File
Hot Water Shower

(Mom no-follow) - Pretty big for a dial up, and for a person that has never left the USA…

Note, I will soon convert and publish in formats for Linux and Mac users.

Why the Hot Water does not work in Hotel

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