I have not washed dishes with hot water in almost two years. Our water sits in an exposed cement basin until it’s used and refilled. We dip our toothbrushes into it before brushing, not phased by grains of rice, bracelets, and soap suds visible in it. We buy our food out of 100lb plastic sacks after we run our hands through it to somehow decipher it’s quality by touch. When we buy corn on the cob on the bus, we touch every single cob until we find the perfect one, just like every other customer before us did. When we eat meals we put our elbows on the table and stuff the food in our mouth by way of our hands. Our hands we most likely didn’t wash before eating. Most likely because there are a lack of sanitary stations in the country. We cook rice once a day and leave it on the stove, in 90 degree weather, to eat with every other meal, not seeing a reason to reheat it before the subsequent meals. When we buy prepared food, it’s most likely been sitting uncovered for numerous hours before our consumption. I don’t remember the last time I ate a meal hot, unless I made it. We take public transportation everywhere. Each bus on my route carries between 300-500 passengers a day and they have deemed it necessary to only wipe down the seats twice during their 12 hour shift. Babies chew on the seats and windowsills without as much as a glance from their parents. We drink water out of plastic bags that have been handled by numerous people before entering our mouth. Our soda and beer come in refilled, must-be-returned, glass bottles with dirt caked around the opening. We touch everyone, all the time. Even those we don’t know. We’re all sweaty, all the time; we rarely have a chance to wash our hands; we’re constantly shoving our fingers in our mouth eating; and yet we still find the need to touch everyone. Nothing is packaged. If it is, it’s too expensive to afford. Fresh foods are sold in an open-air market that reeks of sewage and resembles LA traffic. The food sold there was transported in open-air trucks from all parts of the country if not from neighboring countries. It was likely sprayed with pesticides just days before harvest and brought directly to the market. Soaps expensive. It’s almost solely used to wash dishes and mop the floor. I often wonder if the floors are cleaner than our tables and chairs since we daily disinfect them. When we use a cup for water, we don’t consider it dirty. We put it back in it’s place to be used again. If you walk into a workplace nice enough to have a water dispenser, there will be one metal cup next to it that everyone shares. We cut raw meat on cutting boards and with knifes after which we splash some water on and call clean. Our chickens and pigs ravage through our trash piles to feed themselves. Then we kill them and eat them. We buy food off the street, prepared in the street, without sanitary regulations. We swim in fresh water swimming holes littered with trash, leftover food after people washed their dishes in it, and filled with infected water from an estuary. We don’t think twice.
I’ve had two head colds and one parasite since May 2010. Take that FDA.