Because I don't have a photo of toilet paper to illustrate this post with, I'm going with sourdough starter instead.
BUBBLY! There's more interest in sourdough than I thought, so I'll come back to it, I promise. And I think it'd make sense to be able to see the starter and maybe the sponge and process on a video clip, some things just don't translate to still photography. I'm on it.
Meanwhile: toilet paper.
Of all the hot spots people have about this challenge, this would have to be number one. I started out with only a handful of rolls and was canvassing our options when my friend Fi showed up with many, many rolls. Adam was very relieved.
But meanwhile our stash is dwindling and if we can stretch the food, can't we stretch this too?
My thinking gets confused here, because it's easy to go off on a tangent thinking about the ridiculous number of litres of drinkable water we/I flush down the toilet every day. I'm embarrassed by it. We don't have a grey water system or a fabulous composting toilet and talking about the unsustainability of toilet paper loses a bit of it's sting in comparison to depleting our water supply this way.
Yet you don't have to travel far to find people doing without toilet paper very nicely. While the most "European" (read: palatable) alternative tends to be, you guessed it, water, people all over the globe are using fabric, wool, banana leaves, corn cobs, sand and stones.
So I reckon there probably is an alternative.
While this is not a lovely tight paid up freelance article outlining my experiences trialling the alternatives, this is a blog. And we make it up as we go along, right?
My Dad has already rung from the centre of Australia to remind me of the very very old sewerage system under this very very old house and not to put anything funny down the toilet.
So no corn cobs down the loo Dad? OK then.
Our barter system down here is going strong. My beautiful friend Heather today traded onions and carrots for a couple of bags of our chook and cow manure for her garden. Awesome trade!
Dinner tonight was salad leaves (thanks Mark) with olives and sliced boiled egg and crunchy croutons (buttered, day-old bread cubed and baked in a moderate oven for about 15 mins). The beetroot was a trade from Karina last week, boiled up on the stove and stored in a container with white vinegar. Best way to eat beetroot!
Almost at three weeks. And tonight I scrawled a list of possible dinners from food in the fridge and pantry. Not at the end yet.
We've got guests this weekend and we'll see how low we are on loo roll on Monday.
Of course, this may be the point at which Adam, endlessly energetic and imaginative about this challenge, chucks it in. A man has a limit. Adam's may be cloths next to the loo.
Might start on good old phone books first if I can find any (free) old ones with the paper paper, not the shiny paper, remember those?
My Grandma had newspaper neatly cut up, punched with a hole in the corner and tied with string in the outside loo. (Although I wonder if she ever used it – there was an inside toilet too – the outside one was likely for the menfolk in their gumboots.)
What do you reckon?
Corn cob, anyone?