the loo in Peru



Bodily functions. They’re a bother, aren’t they? It’s the bloody 21st century, SURELY we could have evolved out of having them by now! Or at least James Dyson could have invented something to sort them out better than the flawed systems currently available. Hurry up, Mr Dyson; Rachel needs you:

I’m writing from Lima, Peru where I work as a copywriter. I’ve been living in Lima for five weeks now and there is one thing that is really bothering me about this country, so please answer me this:

Why can’t you flush toilet paper down the toilet in Peru?

When I first started working here, I noticed that there was a little sign on the office toilet cubicle doors saying ‘Please don’t flush paper down the lavatory’. At first I thought this was just an office thing. However I came home yesterday to find that my cleaner had put up a sign in MY bathroom, opposite my toilet, saying ‘Please don’t flush toilet paper down the toilet’. It was accompanied with a picture of a sad/irritated-looking cartoon toilet. WHY?!?

If it doesn’t go down the toilet where is it supposed to go? If they have always had a problem with putting toilet paper down the toilet then why haven’t they come up with a better system yet? Like inventing the ‘three seashells‘ thing they talk about in Demolition Man.

Don’t get me wrong, I expected there to be some cultural differences when I moved to Lima from York; but this seems very odd. I am still putting my paper in the toilet and nothing bad seems to be happening. This means I am putting clean paper in the bin to trick my nosy cleaner.

I’m not a Peruvian plumber (surprise!), so my answer is pure speculation. I understand that the same is true in many areas of Greece, because the plumbing cannot cope with paper, and in their present plight I doubt that replacing all the country’s piping is top of their agenda.

So I guess that either Peru is the same, or that everybody has colonics there. Peristalsis is SO 19th-century, Rachel! Get with it.


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2 Responses to “the loo in Peru”

  1. andy Says:

    For those unsure when travelling whether to flush/bin/bury/burn, I am glad to report that someone has done a country by country guide on this pressing issue:

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