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Thread: cleanliness is next to godliness

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Nelson, New Zealand

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    I remember my old father-in-law saying something about eating a 'peck of dirt'. Some children have darn near eaten their peck before they get to two years old. Well dirt, sand, plus odds and ends off the floor.

    While I love the luxury of a hot shower, often when staying in a cabin (off the grid) I strip naked and tip cold water over myself.... thoroughly rub the sweaty bits with plain soap..... then rinse off with more cold water. I'd normally do this every day. It really makes me appreciate my warm clothes and a fire afterwards. I may wear the same shirt for a week or more ..... but generally I'll wash my underpants thoroughly with soap every few days. Socks are another thing I like to keep clean. So I always make sure I have maybe three pairs of socks and underpants with me.

    I don't like getting into bed dirty.

    In really cold weather I might heat a bit of water and pour it into a bucket so I don't completely freeze while washing. I don't always use a wash cloth because it is just another thing that has to be dried.... and I do wonder about the bacteria that it might hold. But a rough towelling wash cloth is good for scrubbing myself. After I've done washing, I rinse out the washcloth, then wring out the excess water.... and use it to remove the bulk of the water off my skin before I use my towel.

    While I like to have access to antiseptics (man-made or natural), I generally don't believe in making everything sterile. Our body has a wonderful immune system that probably needs to be exercised. And I don't like the idea of tipping out bacteria-killing substances on to the forest floor or, worse still, into creeks.

    I may be deluding myself, but after I've taken a dump outdoors or I've gutted some animal I've shot.... I might rub wet clay into my hands. Then I wash my hands in a river until I can't see any more clay. I figure if I've removed the clay, then I've probably gotten rid of the worst of whatever else was on my hands.

    I've heard that sunlight is a great thing for cleaning and sterilizing. Obviously you wouldn't trust it to sterilize surgical instruments.... but it is great to hang your wash cloth and clothing where it is fully exposed to the sun. My wife and I prefer, by far, to dry our washing in the sun. Sure, we have to use the clothes line under the verandah on wet days.... and maybe even the dryer. But the sun does a great job.... and it just feels right to do it this way.

    Good topic thanks.
    Last edited by coote; 06-24-2012 at 03:36 AM.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Innercore from 550 cord is great dental floss. It`s a little thick but who doesnt like a smile that looks like a picket fence
    Chewing on a green stick from a known/safe species has been mentioned for tooth brush.
    Goats beard/witches hair as a natural scrubbie pad for teeth and body,as well as cooking gear. i would think other lichens would also work well.
    Use your shirt to scrub teeth periodically.

    Tooth care is and has been a major point due to the number of P.O.W. `s who experienced dental problems in captivity... thats why we go to the dentist prior to deployment to this day.

    As far as body,

    The smokeing the feet was more to dry them in a wet environment, which covers numerous biomes. and the heat and smoke kill bacteria.
    Scrubbing hands and body with sand from a creek will remove dead skin and remove bacteria.Nothing wrong with getting in the creek for a sand bath all over other than shrinkage....

    Ground Alum root was used back when as a starch substitute (natures goldbond). I`ve used it and can attest to the need to grind it more than you think it needs :0.....but it does work on feet and crotch.

    manty plants can be pulverized to create soap for body and clothes, and scrubbing clothes to remove blood, dead skin , sweat ETC will prevent bacteria from staying in contact with body. Even air baths are better than nothing (Ben Franklin was a fan)

    In a long term survival situation (non combat) it is the creases,folds and contact areas of the body that suffer the most and are succeptible to heat rash,body sores,infection and parasites, so wash there often, dry often and inspect daily.

    I`m a fan of fire for its ability to steralize, dry, kill bacteria...on just about any surface.

    In the field we used a handfull of grass to initially scrub cook kits etc and then sand to scrub burnt food out. Do this away from the creek to ensure you dont contaminate anybody downstream, as well as keeping any soap out of the watersource. This may also be usefull for setting up a blind also as animals were attracted to the food residue if it didnt have soap in it and was away from camp....

  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Silverthorn View Post
    According to the Mormons, the American indians are old testement tribes, that came here before the tribes were enslaved over there.
    If thats true, then the similarities make a lot of sense.
    lol mormons

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    This is about the 4th time Ive posted this , but I take a bar of Ivory soap with me and take baths in creeks, river , lakes... Ivory soap floats so you cant lose it , like I have done with another brand.

    When we were kids we use to wash our hands in the "crick" with soft , blue shale. We called it Indian soap.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    On the river bank watching the Turkey vultures glide
    Quote Originally Posted by Cougar Allen View Post
    The proverb is "a peck of dirt." There are four pecks in a bushel.... I guess nobody uses pecks and bushels any more, and in another generation or two everybody will think it's a speck of dirt.

    Just to keep the knowledge alive a little longer, the small basket is a peck. The others are bushel baskets.

    Well I'll be darned, I just learned something. I was scraping from an experience as a 10-11 year old ? A lot of heavy booze and dope went through the sponge since then. I have missing mental periods. Long past all that lifestyle now though.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Milwaukee, WI
    I don't remember where I read this, as it was a long time ago when I was a teenager, so take it for what it's worth. But I recall reading that athletes during the Roman Empire times would "bathe" in the following manner after working out in order to get rid of sweat and grime: they would cover their bodies with olive oil, then take sand and rub it into their skin, and finally use a curved blade (similar to a sickle perhaps?) to scrap the sand off their bodies. This process did replace bathing, it was just used as a quick clean-up and to re-energize the skin.

    Again, I don't recall where I read this, just throwing it out there.

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