Restroom issues and more

Over two billion people have no sanitary facilities nor have access to public restrooms. There are some very interesting and promising initiatives to address this big problem. Another problem, however, is the use of the public restrooms in airports, shopping centers, railway stations and hotels. About the use of toilets at home are no statistics available. From the use of public restrooms in the world are also no statistics available. So all comments and data are from my own perception. Therefore, a self-appointed expert seems to be in charge here.

The interest in design, innovation, logistics and cleaning maintenance of restrooms is from a purely technical background. This is to prevent that readers might think that there is a bad deviation to be detected. The use of urinals anywhere in the world show structural leakage problems. These problems originate from the penis. It does not matter what form, quality or scope of the urinals, there are always remnants of urine on the floor. Part of this leakage is caused by a hasty use, the inability to open the zipper and or technical aspects from the body. The embedded targets fly in urinals, an idea from the cleaning innovation committee of Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, shows only a partial solution. It will be of no surprise that Hans Westerveld was part of this committee.

The ordinary user only must deal with the circumstance that the urine on the floor is sucked in his leather soles, where it however does not hurt.

But there is more. In the privacy of the toilet are other issues to resolve besides the necessary relief. Those familiar with ‘ass showers’ (in the Far East countries) are desperate limited to the use of toilet paper. The transpiration increases once it is established that the roll is empty and a new one will only emerge with the use of a screwdriver. The fountain pen is a helpful tool but thereafter not workable as a fountain pen again. That the toilet, the flush button and the door handle is equipped with fecal matter is known to you, but being a healthy person you do not expect life-threatening problems, which is a correct estimate.

The seclusion in a toilet cell makes you realize the restriction of being locked up in a body. A body that, to your understanding, could have been better designed and developed. The guilt stemming from the idea of separation from the One, which resulted in the idea of an identity of our own, registers in our consciousness but cannot be answered. This is due to the fact that the knowledge on this subject is contained within a portion of the mind that we do not dare to look at. If we regard this as a problem, can we also solve it? Absolutely!

But first finish the toilet procedure, wash your hands, use paper towels, do not use old type hand dryers and use a paper towel to open the restroom door. Then continue with the chosen program for this day.

For more information and advice on toilet design, logistics, quality, and cleaning, but also about the spirituality in the last paragraph please connect to:

The stress-increasing self-service of KLM and other minor suffering

The stress-increasing self-service of KLM and other minor suffering

I decide to book KLM again for a trip to the Far East. This after many flights with Singapore Airlines. I report to the KLM check-in counters at the appropriate time. The counters are deserted and there is a flight attendant near the entrance poles. No stress. In view of the growth rings, this employee seems to have survived several reorganizations.

After having indicated that I have checked in on the internet, I am led to a machine, the so-called suitcase check-in machine. New, so little stress. The suitcase must be placed in the machine and the booking code must be entered on a display. The machine closes, weighs the case and opens the lid again. Too much luggage.

After the decision has been made which items to take with me as hand luggage and which to dump in the four waste disposal options, I must place the suitcase back in the machine. Reasonable stress. Until than I had to perform all actions myself, which is promoted as 'quick processing'. Innovation and the application of IT.

Or is it only intended for the reduction of the 'headcount' at the aviation company? Angry stress. After weighing and finding the right place, the suitcase disappears into the catacombs of terminal two. There my suitcase proceeds on the path to the luggage cellar where the only living creatures who are close to my suitcase will be limited to the drug shepherd dog.

Stress decreases. Time to relax after strolling around in the lounge and visiting a bookshop, a bank counter and the fruit juice company. Stress away. For many travelers, stress remains a burden until they find themselves behind the seat belt and the carry-on luggage safely in the bin directly above their head.

The welcome on board is relaxed and the cabin crew professionally conceals the knowledge that some morons need to be directed to the correct aisle. Always they encounter an eccentric who is of the opinion that his double bass fits in the 'overhead bin'.

Laughing and thus reducing stress. I use the hot disposable cloth to clean the tray table, the window, the information display, and the handset. Disposable or not, the cloth is collected again for a second live. The only other correct use is to clean the hands if one has used a luggage cart. Light bewilderment all around me.

Fortunately, the request for assistance to help the 'crew' with closing the upper bins, probably enforced in the collective labor agreement negotiations, is not announced. It turned out to be too very hard work for the girls and men, an issue which has not been recognized by Garuda and Singapore Airlines. The white and red wine in the small bottles is of good quality.

After consumption, it is therefore easy to smile when the discrepancy between the advertising text 'delicious meals' and the contents of the box reveals itself. Laughter and stress reducing. I'm going to sleep. At KUL or Kuala Lumpur wait forty minutes and then on to Jakarta. Back of course also via KUL. Before landing a message from a chief. Due to regulations of KUL we are now required to poison the cabin with pesticides which comply with international standards. Stress increasing and angry. WTF are those international standards, sometimes based on an admission number from the TUV. Is it a derivative of Zyclon B type that used to be quite popular in central Europe?

Upon inquiry, it appears that the staff in the flight deck use their oxygen masks. Laughter reduces stress. What kind of germs are the people in Malaysia afraid of or is it just the result of the animosity between Malaysia and Indonesia? Stress outside my neighborhood. Next time just flying with Singapore Airlines via Singapore and then move on.

Post scriptum: this blog is from quite some time ago. Since then, the quality of the catering has improved significantly. The service and presentation of the KLM cabin crew is always of an admirable good level. Even in the back in row 54. From September 2021, KLM will fly directly to Jakarta

Keyboards, Remote Controls, Buffet, and Restroom Contamination

What are the similarities between: keyboard of a computer, your keyboard, handles of a shopping cart, handles of luggage, remote controls at home, remote control elsewhere, audio / video selector on a plane and faucets, flush handles, doorhandles in restrooms?

First similarity: All mentioned components are seldom clean or seldom get cleaned. Second similarity: All mentioned components contain attached dirt. This attached dirt may consist of feces, semen, blood, nose residue, skin oil, sweat and other dirt.

Okay, so what, I wash my hands before I go to get a meal! What about your meal in buffet style? We can assume that the cutlery has passed the dishwasher and that the catering staff has washed their hands. However, you are not the only one holding the spoons and forks to fill your plate! The later you enjoy this buffet the greater is the likelihood that these components show dirt.

However, “show” is an incorrect term here, probably you feel stickiness and experience the urge to wash your hands. The table edge or the chair which you touch accidentally will experience that they have not been cleaned recently, the confirmation of this shows when you carefully look at these parts.

If, after so much unpleasant inspiration, the urge arises to wash your hands in a restroom, remember the golden rule: “after washing your hands do not touch faucet, door or flush buttons, because otherwise you might be better off with not washing your hands.

In summary, thoroughly hand washing, dry with paper towel, then close the tap with the paper. No paper available? Don’t dry your hands at all. Leave the restroom without touching anything.

Why this advice? The cleaning program will surely include cleaning these elements. However, without regular supervision there is no guarantee that the cleaning is performed in a professional way! Moreover, it is not easy to check or measure that the cleaning and disinfection of these components have been carried out. Is this all dangerous to human health?

Exceptions of bacteria and viruses that the WHO has declared as highly contagious it is not so bad. Your body has developed a fantastic ‘immune’ system in the last million years for anything foreign. The countless and constant attacks at the skin, mouth and wounds on your physical integrity are brilliantly approached by this system.

The quality of the ‘acid’ in the stomach recognizes with pleasure the challenge of the shawarma sandwich you decided to swallow, the meat itself full of living bacteria moving themselves around the heating carousel.

In a situation when you stomach protection cannot cope with the new arrivals, at most the stool, instead of the usual color and firmness, shall appear by means of a rapid, often unannounced, blast and ruin the entire toilet area. The relief on your part makes you feel much better, and a professional cleaner sees no problem to get the cleaning job done. Ready for the next use.

Wait a moment! Before you entered the restroom you noticed that the entry door opened towards the toilets. This means that you need a paper towel to open the door when leaving this restroom without touching the handle with your hand.

Have a clean and good day!