Taiwan toilets: The toilet paper problem
When I first started using toilets in Taiwan I couldn’t help but notice the little bin that always next to the toilet bowl.
This oddity was then later explained by Scribbler;
Ha! This is so true! Vietnam is much the same except the bathrooms are even smaller and the toilet plumbing is too small to take toilet paper. Every toilet has a bin next to it for the toilet paper.
Prior to this I hadn’t read this reasoning anywhere else and nobody has actually told me here that the plumbing is too small for toilet paper.
For the time being I’ve adopted the ‘head in the sand’ approach and this seems to be working.
Whether the plumbing can handle it or not I have no idea but for me the whole problem with not flushing your toilet paper is the smell. Seriously who wants to walk into a toilet and smell a basket full of used toilet paper?
Then there’s the visual. I mean sure if you’ve got a bin with a lid on then your set (although the wave of smell every time you open the lid is still a knockout), but if you don’t well you’re sitting on the can and right next to you is the visual of masses of chocolate stained paper.
Mind you in most places here the toilet also doubles as a shower/bathroom too.
Worse still is if you’re using a squat toilet then you’re practically breathing in skid mark fumes.
One of the reasons I came to Taiwan was because there was considerably less of a third world standard of living here then other Asian countries. Toilet paper in baskets is pretty close to being a deal breaker. Nothing says ‘too much information’ then being a guest at somebodies house, walking into an immaculately clean bathroom and seeing basket of their used toilet paper.
As I mentioned earlier my approach at this stage is to just flush it. Coincidentally if you ever read about massive plumbing problems affecting Taiwan or the sewerage system grinding to a complete halt… it was probably me.