Monday, April 21, 2003

Elimination While Car Living
One of the first questions Im asked, after someone learns that I'm living in my van, is "Where do you go to the bathroom?". There are quite a few options. My first preference is to use a restaurant or coffee shop.. which I typically do during the day. Also, I belong to a 24 hour gym, so I can drive there if I've really gotta go!

Still, that's not feasible in the middle of the night or in the morning, so I have in-van options as well. I use two gatorade bottles to store urine. Peeing into the large mouth openings is quite easy (for a man... a woman would need a funnel), and the bottles seal completely... so no leakage or odor. Later in the day, I discreetly dump the urine at a park (or other grassy area). Shitting is not as easy. I usually take care of this during the day or evening-- when Im in public places... or I'll dash over to the gym if necessary. However, there have been a couple of occaisons when "I had to go" and had to go fast! For such emergencies I keep a box of ziploc freezer bags. I open a bag, hold it to my bottom, squat, and defecate. It's not comfortable or particularly pleasant, but it works. I put used toilet paper in the bag and then seal it closed ( I wear disposable rubber gloves during this process... and they go into the bag too... prior to sealing it). I then seal that bag inside another bag... and both of them inside a third bag. Once I've got it triple sealed -- no odor leaks out. I can then dump the bag whenever I get the opportunity.

Finally, I use a smaller gatorade bottle when brushing my teeth at night. I use it to collect the spit... seal it... and dump it when I dump urine. This one actually gets nastier than the urine bottles- and so it's good to keep it rinsed out regularly.

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