• Saturday, February 28, 2015

Things they don't tell you about Bidesh: Part 2

The Hygiene Chronicles

Sarah Nafisa Shahid

A week after starting your new, 'independent' life in Bidesh, the first thing that hits you is that your bathroom reeks and you cannot bear the toxic stench any longer. There is no bua to clean it for you either, so toughen yourself for what awaits.
I don't know about other places but my dorm's bathroom in Montreal did not even have a drain. So pouring water to clean the floor was a terrible mistake. I still clearly remember the horror of having no drain in the bathroom; I just do not understand the logic behind that. Bathroom is one place where it is expected that you will spill water, and there could even be a leakage! I probably spent the next hour cursing the architect of the damn building. The sight of wet black mould accumulating on the corners of the floor was a joy to behold.
Soon, you learn to use spray-on tile cleaners and become the cleaning pro that you were always meant to be, or you might become anyway after graduating with a liberal arts degree. And then come the mid-term weeks when all you do is eat, pray, sleep in the library. The day it ends and you come home to finally relax and reward yourself with a hot shower and some tea, you realise that amidst your deadline, a pressing issue had been forgotten, a deadly blunder indeed. You wonder to yourself, how have I managed to live like a pig for so long?
Then, the same old ritual begins, with a spray-on cleaner and a billion kitchen towels, a sacrificial dance to the Queen of Clean.  After an hour of salsa with your friendly Lysol, the Queen demands the carpet be vacuumed. I personally love vacuuming because it's not half as disgusting as cleaning the bathroom but then one fine day, my $10 worth second-hand vacuum cleaner blew up.
I won't even begin with what happens if your roommate's level of hygiene does not match yours.
Here, I'll leave you with a picture of some of my friends cleaning their backyard in the United States and the garbage of one of my Bangladeshi friends after mid-terms week. This is a serious issue, do not take hygiene lightly.


Published: 12:00 am Thursday, January 16, 2014

Last modified: 10:59 pm Thursday, January 16, 2014

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