Journal entries
Le Bon Journal


Bon Journal

The smell that permeates

After awhile, it's possible to tolerate the background noise of distant traffic, television, telephone, and conversation. The mind blocks it out.

But how does one live with a stinky smell that rises from the sewers and gets carried by the wind through open windows?

On a fine evening in spring, my father and I both noticed a unique smell which seemed to spread like wild fire. It wasn't a cooking smell but a kind of sulphuric, unpleasant, pungent smell.

The smell descended into my room that night when I went to bed at 1:30 am. As I drifted into a light sleep, I felt a nightmare of the smell taking over the entire city, suffocating all its inhabitants for being so greedy and irresponsible. Needless to say, I did not sleep well or at all.

In the morning, I asked my dad why such a smell still persisted. He replied, "There are so many people living in this city. There is poor urban planning. It's possible that someone's toilet leaked and no one bothered to fix it."

Was it a result of the contamination of untreated toilet waste? I shuddered at the thought. Even ancient cities in Europe manage to treat their human waste to prevent such odors from escaping. Why can't Taichung?

16 April 2004 Friday

Related journal entries:
Squat toilets
Like this entry?
Your comments to editor:
Your e-mail address:
Tell your friends about this Bon Journal entry:
Your name:
Your e-mail address:
Your friend(s): Be sure this field is filled and correct!
 (please separate additional addresses with commas)
Your message:

Anne Ku at Ilp in May 2001
Anne Ku

writes about her travels, conversations, thoughts, events, music, and anything else that is interesting enough to fill a web page.
Support the Bon Journal by keeping alive and free. Find out about Sponsorship.