The Science of Constipation

I’d assumed that my lack of constipation all these years had to do with the fact that I’ve been a vegetarian most of my adult life. While I’m sure that has a lot to do with it, I recently learned more about this terrible condition, which seems to afflict senior citizens for several reasons. They don’t drink enough water, get enough exercise, or eat enough roughage, especially fruit.

I exercise a lot, drink a lot of water, and get plenty of roughage, all of which keep things moving along for me. What made me think about all this takes a bit of explaining.

We recently returned from a nice trip with out motorhome. Both pets accompanied Alice and me, and we adjusted quite nicely to living a bit cramped in our little home on wheels. The first stop on our journey was Tillers International, where I took a 6-day timber framing class. On about the 4th day of the class, something bad happened… the motorhome water tank went empty. It should be a simple thing to just fill up the tank. The problem, though, is that if the drinking water tank is empty, then the sewer and grey water tanks are close to full, and needed to be emptied.

We looked around online and discovered that the fairgrounds near Kalamazoo (about a 10 mile drive) had dump facilities that were free and open to the public. So first thing Friday morning, we unhooked and drove the motorhome to the fairgrounds. With a little effort, we found the dump in the middle of an empty asphalt field where folks must camp during the fair. We had acres to ourselves that morning. With well practiced efficiency, I donned my rubber gloves, hooked up the flexible hose, and pulled the lever to release the valve on the sewer tank. It takes a few seconds for the first glug of contents to enter the hose, and when it did, I couldn’t help but feel the same relief that I do when I’m sitting in the bathroom. I kind of wondered if the motorhome also felt similarly relieved as I closed valves, hosed things off, and drove away.

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