After eight months in South-East Asia it was inevitable that we would end up using that weird hose sitting behind the toilet in every public and private bathroom.
Initially, I didn’t fully grasp the concept of spraying your butt hole, rather than wiping the butt hole (I blame my parents and Western society for leading me down the wrong path), but now having used the butt spray on more than several occasions, I completely understand the notion of showering your arsehole after a number 2 with clean, fresh water! I mean, if there’s dog poo on the hypothetical table, would you use tissue paper to smear it around, or would you use a bucket with water to wash it away? Exactly.
Like with using a squat toilet, there are a few cardinal rules that you should follow, unless you want your pants completely soaked, or shite sprayed all over the room (this can happen; imagine a jet powered hose blasting into a freshy). So check out the below tips that I’ve discovered for using the hose so that you too, can enjoy the sensation and cleanliness of using a butt spray instead of that pleby, primitive, dirty thing we call toilet paper.
1. Always Test Spray the Hose Somewhere Else.
Luckily most bathrooms in South-East Asia are ‘wet rooms,’ rooms that are permanently wet due to the shower hanging over the toilet. This means you can use the hose anywhere in the room to test the velocity and strength of the stream. Cockroach in that corner? Spray it down the drain. Spider hanging over the toilet? Spray it down the drain. Someone else’s pubic hair all over the floor? Spray it down the drain.
This step is crucial as you don’t want a full strength spray accidentally shooting into the toilet bowl, thus spraying the contents of said bowl up into your bottom.
2. If Possible, Flush the Contents of Your Bowels Away.
I like to hover a bit and flush the toilet before sitting back down and commencing the spraying of the buttocks. This means that if I miscalculate and accidentally spray the bowl the water that sprays back onto my butt will be clean water, and not shitty water. If you want to save the environment and only flush once, good on you, just be very mindful of where you aim.
3. Aim is Everything.
Don’t aim pointing down your butt cheeks. This will not clean anything and will just cause you to have wet butt cheeks. Pretty horrible when you next stand up and water is dripping down your legs.
You will actually need to aim up at a slight angle to actually get within the hole vicinity. Not directly up as this will be a weird sensation (basically your arse hole will get water boarded), and you might get flecks of waste spraying everywhere. Instead, it needs to be at such a slight upwards angle to ensure your hole does get sprayed, but also so that the waste water will drip neatly into the bowl. Lionel said he hovers to do this. I don’t. Each to their own.
4. Close Your Legs. Don’t “Man-Spread.”
Have you heard of this ‘man spreading’ phenomenon? It’s bloody annoying. It’s when an arrogant man decides (I say ‘decide’ because it is a conscious decision) to spread his legs wide, thus taking up more space on either side of him. Basically encroaching onto the people next to him. Worst culprits can be found on public transport and on flights. I guess he needs to air out his balls or something…?
But I digress, when you use a bum-gun, make sure you CLOSE YOUR LEGS. Sometimes your aim might be a bit off, and you can get water shooting out under your legs, into the air, onto the floor. Or worse, the water will hit your bum hole, then splash up into your face, especially if you’re looking down to see what’s happening.
You definitely do not need shitty water in your face.
5. Try to Dry
It’s not always easy as toilet paper is not consistently supplied in South-East Asia, but it is preferably to finish up with some paper. Mostly to ensure your butt hole is clean, but also to make sure it isn’t damp. Just imagine what a damp, dark, claustrophobic area within synthetic underwear will feel like in Asia’s humidity. Just imagine…
Now, if you are anything like us, you have completely fallen in love with the concept of the “bum gun”. Once we finally settle down somewhere, we will definitely be getting this!
6. TP in the Bin
Having lived in Thailand for two years, and being in South-East Asia for close to three years, I now have something new to add in terms of using The Golden Throne. Once you have bombarded your arsehole with water, and dried it with a flimsy, half a ply square of toilet paper, please, please do not throw it down the toilet. South-East Asian plumbings cannot deal with this shit!! They can deal with actual human excrement, but not paper, and certainly not female hygiene products. I know it’s gross to put used toilet paper in the little plastic waste bins next to the toilet, but if you’ve used the Bum Gun correctly (and I should hope this blog piece taught you well), then the TP should be ever so slightly damp, but not tainted.
Once these toilets get clogged up, it’s game over for you, your toilet, and your dignity. You don’t know how many times Lionel and I had to learn this lesson the hard way (of course not with female hygiene products – I’m not an uneducated monster!).
So there you have it. A couple of tips we’ve collected along the way. Rest assured we’ve done the groundwork for you and your butt. Your butt will thank us.
And, for the ladies who are traveling around SE Asia, don’t forget to pick up a menstrual cup either!
But Please, Don’t Be These Guys…
One memory that is close to my heart is when we were in Malaysia, second week of traveling, having dinner with a friend. Lionel went to the bathroom to wash his hands after dinner; we had used our hands to eat, like a local(!) – and he came back complaining that the tap and hose were ridiculously low to the ground and unhygienically close to the toilet. Turns out he thought the butt spray was a tap for washing your hands!
And just before we moved to Koh Tao, Lionel also saw a guy come out of a cubicle with the back of his t-shirt completely and utterly drenched. He obviously did not follow tip Number 3.
Let us know if you have had any butt spray mishaps, or go and check out My Guide to Squat Toilets!