Friday, May 08, 2009

I Have An Idea

In light of this H1N1 scare we have had and the resultant deluge of advice on how to stay clean, I have an idea. It goes along with the advice that the government has been giving us. That is to wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds after using the bathroom. Then using the paper towel with which you have dried your hands to open the bathroom door.

Whenever you leave a bathroom in Mexico which has no toilet seat, no toilet paper, no running water, no soap and/or no paper towels, stop and ask the manager of the restaurant, bar or even gas station why these items necessary for good hygiene are missing? You might even mention that the Dept of Health has recommended that these items are necessary in every bathroom in Mexico.

I would like to hear from those of you that follow this advice. What was the response?

17 comments:

Sue said...

I'm hoping they'll actually put soap and paper towels in hospital rooms. When Miguel was burned and in a room that was supposed to protect him from outside infection, I had to buy soap, toilet paper, paper towels, etc. I put the soap pump on the sink hoping people would use it. Nobody used it because they never expected it to be there. The public bathroom in the ER was devoid of everything, including toilet paper. I learned to carry it all in my bag, like many Mexicans have to do. I hope this flu situation changes the public bathrooms here, it will be interesting to see if anyone follows your suggestion and posts feedback.

Life's a Beach! said...

LOL! I heard the other day to gauge the length of your handwashing by singing Happy Birthday to yourself twice. I assume they didn't mean 'out loud' when in a public john.

Christine said...

I have always thought that the lack of toilet paper and seats in Mexico had to do with the inherent sexism of Mexican society.

Islagringo said...

Sue: a friend of mine had to be in the hospital for a bit here on the island. I was appalled that they do not even provide sheets! Her friends had to bring sheets for the bed, go to the pharmacy and bring back her medications and even bring her her meals! I think of that whenever these blog people go on and on about the great healthcare down here.

LAB: we got taught that diddy in grade school. You must have been home sick that day!

Christine: while I don't for a second argue with you about Mexico being sexist, the toilet situation here is the same for men as women. No toilet seat, paper, soap or towels.

1st Mate said...

OK, to get down to the nitty gritty so to speak, we should all carry tote bags with our own toilet paper, several paper towels and soap. Then we'd be ready for anything.

I hadn't heard that about supplying your own sheets and meals in the Mexican hospitals. I'll have to ask my friend La Doctora if it's the same here. It would be good to know that BEFORE being hospitalized.

Louise said...

Interesting comments. I'm surprised that at least the hospital bathrooms aren't better equiped, especially in the light of the recent flu issue. I'm from the US and visited Mexico two years ago and the bathroom facilities were fine in our Hotel but ... when we traveled away from the hotel the situation digressed very quickly. The thing that bothered me the most were the many signs that requested the bathroom user to not flush ANY paper down the toilet, it was to be thrown into waste baskets that were beside of the toilets. I didn't quite understand the reasoning behind this but it was a very difficult thing for me to abide by, but I did.

Despite the bathroom issue our vacation was amazing and I have plans to return the beginning of June. It would be a little more comforting though if the facilities were a little better equiped, particularly in the areas that would typical draw visitors.

Anonymous said...

Was hospitalized in Galenia, in Cancun. The room was supplied like a 5 star hotel. So no complaints there.

I always carry tissue and hand santizer in my bag. Don't leave home without it.

I have been told the no toilets seats where due to robbery of same from public toilets. Also, why are prices for toilet seats so expensive in Mexico ? A simple seat can cost somewhere in the range of 30usd. same seat in USA would be 10 bucks !

Anonymous said...

Well, the do-not-put-TP-in-the-toilet has to do with clogging up the inadequate sewage systems.

The ripping-off-the-toilet-seat thing has to do with them making ideal picture frames ...(??????)




(Sounded good to me.)

American Mommy in Mexico said...

Yeah. Not happening. But good thought.

Anonymous said...

got a good chuckle out of the comment on using toilet seats as frames!

i'm a bit of a germaphobe and not only do i use a paper towel to open the door, i also use it to turn off the faucet. think of all the icky germs on that from all those dirty hands.

teresa in lake stevens

have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

a hundred years later and nobody makes a toilet with a rim which is a seat!

Linda Dorton said...

Wow, you stirred up some emotions with this post! Let's see if our hygiene campaign works with Pemex!

Kathy said...

I don't think I can remember the last bathroom I was in that had a door... really. can't think of one.

I'm just really happy to see the little lavabos at restaurants. Sweet!

Nancy said...

I'll give your idea a try and report back!

Theresa in Mèrida said...

Husband was in the hospital recently, not the fancy one that gringos like to go to, and he had sheets, pillowcases etc, we had to ask for the soap and towels, but I think they just hadn't gotten around to putting them in the room yet. There was tp already.
My friend was in Star Medica and her room was nicer than most hotel rooms here.
regards,
Theresa

Michele in Playa said...

Birdie recently spent the night in the Hospiten in Playa del Carmen. Our room was spacious, spotless and fully decked out. I even had a pull out couch to sleep on. No complaints here!

Teresa said...

I had a friend in Cozumel who went into the hospital and they provided her with nothing, her husband had to go out and buy everything. On the other hand I was just in the hospital in Merida, not the top dollar one, just mid range. Anyway I had a lovely private room, great nursing care, fresh towels,soap and sheets changed daily, just as nice as in the states. However the public rest rooms here never have anything, still don't understand the lack of toilet seats after 6 years! Not that I would want to sit on one anyway!