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The Art of the Flush

My traveling companion and good friend Christina (CJ) is a very observant traveler. She is an expert with the weather and continues to get better at guaging what the temp will be both inside and outside of the trains we travel on. She has also begun a short scientific study of the plethora of toliet flushing options that exist here in Europe. There are small buttons and big buttons to push, there are levers to lift, chains to pull down and even brake-like pumps to press with your foot, which, CJ notes, is an excellent germ-free alternative. It seems that each and every toliet we use has its own unique flushing system — on the trains, in the hostels and at restaurants — and we are becoming increasingly entertained and amused by the creativity of the European toliet manufacturing industry. Why all this variety? The small and large flush option is obviously smart, economical and great for conserving water. But why so many ways to do it? And why don’t we have these flushing options in the States? Come to think of it, I have a cousin who is an engineer in the toliet bowl business, I’ll have to see if he has any insight to share. Anyone else?