This post was requested by Sharman Lee Piper (nee Park).

I shower once or twice a week. Amongst TLG and Peace Corps volunteers, this is considered a luxury. We have a tiled bathroom (also a luxury) with a wood-powered water boiler. The shower head sticks out from the wall and drips either scalding water from hell’s fiery maw or water so cold it would doublefreeze Ymir’s* frozen heart. To quote Katie Sweeney, “we don’t shower to get clean, we shower to get less dirty.” YES THIS IS TRUE. I also have no idea when the shower will be hot. Nobody in the family warns me, and there’s no schedule as far as I can tell. Someone will just hop up from the couch and ask, “abano?” and look at me, and then I know it is time to get naked.

THE TOILET IS A TURKISH TOILET. I USE A SQUAT TOILET. YES. IT IS IN A CONCRETE OUTHOUSE AND THEY ONLY WAY TO GET THERE IS BY A MAGICAL PATH OF BROKEN CONCRETE STEPPING STONES AND IRON GRILLES. You have earned your pro pooper’s stars when you have used one of these in the dark, while it rains. Due to a diet consisting almost entirely of milkfat and complex carbohydrates (bread, potatoes), I poop every other day.

Also I deodorize. Tom’s of Maine.


*The frost giant of Norse mythology. The Norse creation myth goes something like, “a giant cow was wandering around in an ice field until it saw a tuft of hair, and then licked around it until all the ice was melted, and freed Ymir, the first of the Giants.”

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