Sunday, March 29, 2009

A Bath in a Box...

Years ago now I was at a multi-stake Boy Scout event called the "Son's of Liberty Encampment". Day after day the air was thick with dust that was being kicked up by 1000's of active Boy Scout feet as we baked in the hot summer sun. Although we were having fun on many levels...physically...we were miserable. The sun was draining us of energy...and we were filthy. We were all trying to become accustomed to or avoid each others stink and looked like Pig-pen from Peanuts.

The only water we had...we had brought in...and had stored it in a couple of 55 gallon drums. It was only to be used for drinking and to cook with. Not a drop was to be wasted. A bunch of boys loosely bathing themselves...dripping our life giving water....our precious beyond all worldly riches water...onto the ground was not an option.

We lay as a troop under a tarp tent in the hot shade festering in our grime when one Scout who had the foresight to bring a package of disposable baby wipes....brought them out. At first some of the boys scoffed at him...that he had a baby product in his supplies. But when they saw him wipe off the first layer of dirt from his face...with one wipe...and then actually get clean with a second wipe...they were all lining up wanting wipes. I too got in that line. Everyone frantically wiped down hands and feet...legs...everywhere. There was an audible sigh of relief from everyone as they became clean.

How long have you ever gone without a shower or bath? If you are accustomed to regularly bathing...just going for a few days can make you feel really gross.

Now what if you are unable to bathe for lack of a source of water...AND are in a dirty...sweaty environment like we were? Then how will you get clean?

When a disaster happens...and you are under great stress...being physically dirty can make an otherwise manageable challenge into a physical and mental hell. There is something that is so psychologically distressing about feeling grimy...and psychologically relieving about becoming clean.

A simple washcloth on which to put a little water on and wipe yourself down is a great thing to have. It can be reused many many times. Of course...after it get's too will need to rinse it out...which will take more water.

In a preparedness video by Jim Phillips he talks about how he went for a month just wiping himself with baby wipes in lieu of taking a shower. He said that he felt fresh and clean. While that may sound a severe drought situation (for example)...where you are relying on a meager portion of water to live may wish you had baby wipes to bathe with! Hopefully you had the foresight to store them.

Now...just a bit on kinds of baby wipes. Understand that there are baby wipes that have really long ingredient lists. All kinds of chemicals that are aimed at making them smell fancy and keep really long. While the longer shelf life may be nice...just understand that you are rubbing a chemical on your skin that could be unhealthy for you.

I have never seen baby wipes go rancid...but I have seen them go dry. In that instance they need a little water to rejuvenate them.

While I do know that you can make your own baby wipes...and that may be a desirable skill to have in your efforts to be self reliant...but that takes time...and the product you make may not store as well as the store-bought. The cost is so reasonable that it shouldn't be a big investment to get a large box of baby wipes. We picked up a box of 704 Kirkland brand wipes from Costco for $16. That is a whole lot of bathing for the money.

If you are concerned about the rotation of the baby shouldn't be. My guess is that you are invited to a baby shower several times a year. Ta-da! You already have a present!!! Then you just replenish your supply the next time you shop. And trust the father of wipes WILL be used...and appreciated.

No comments:

Post a Comment