No tissue paper? No problem. How to wipe your ass hygienically in the wild
City folks reading this will probably snicker. But have you ever had to relieve yourself in the bush, but found out you had no toilet paper? It’s a thought that’s enough to strike dread in the hearts of most people, especially women. The situation gets compounded if you have a runny belly. Then you really have to go for it, toilet paper or not. The biggest challenge for many people is how to go about this and come out with their dignity intact. Because, believe me, going about this in a sloppy manner can really ruin your day (or date!). Bluebottles, disgusted, cringing reactions from friend and foe alike, you get the picture. The smell of human pooh is so strong, so dominating as to defy even the most potent of air fresheners. It’s the only weapon one would ever need to send everyone scurrying for cover.
The aim of this short article is to instruct my readers, so that they know what to do should they ever get caught up in a situation like this.
I know this is not always possible, but it is important to choose one’s spot carefully (consider yourself lucky if your spot is within a shaded grove with broad leaves in abundance). Where possible, avoid places with long grass. Why?
Because as your pooh trickles down, it is likely to get caught by the grass nearest to your feet and may find its way to the bottom of your pants this way. Once you have your spot, proceed to take up your most comfortable position.
The way you’ll squat will play a large part in determining how this will end up. Place your feet at least two feet apart, making sure your anal passage is clear. If you are really pressed, a word of caution; avoid the temptation to let go all at once. You might soil yourself unnecessarily if your body waste spools around your ankles. Or piles up and grazes your bum cheeks! Instead, let go with brief interludes in between, taking time to flex your bum muscles.
As the muscles contract back and forth, any fecal waste at the anal entrance is expelled from the body, leaving you to clean only your bum hole. You may now use a handful of soft leaves to remove any remaining waste, making sure to be as gentle as possible since this area is extremely delicate. Held properly, the stack of leaves create the necessary ‘buffer zone’ between your fingers and the offending waste product so that your hands do not get soiled.
If your fecal waste is wet and runny (yuck!) and there are no leaves close to you, the trick is to swipe the length of your forefinger along the entrance to your anus, as this whole area is likely to be soiled. Make one quick swipe at a time, wiping off the sticky stuff with soil, sand or grass. Repeat the motion to ensure no fecal residue remains. Your bum is now ‘clean’, but your finger stinks to the high heavens. Use a combination of your own spittle, sand or any biodegradable material that you can find to get rid of the offending smell. Alternatively use your own urine to clean your finger.
If your spot happens to be near running water (river or stream), your work will be easy. All you have to do is wash off the entire mess, and then wash your hands until the smell goes away. That said, always remember to use a disinfectant afterwards.
Don’t get caught out. Teach yourself how to go about handling this messy, but sometimes necessary business.
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