Washing Hands in Space

Colonel Chris Hadfield, astronaut, space troubadour, and mentor ‘par excellence’, currently aboard the Int’l Space Station, was asked a question by one of the school children who participated in a live feed to the ISS, “How do you wash your hands in space?”  

So Chris demonstrated, you can watch the video on YouTube here, squeezing a “blob” of water containing a small amount of soap.  Not only does he have to squeeze a small amount out of a plastic baggie, but needs to catch it and at the same time catch the baggie, otherwise it would float away like a balloon inside the Station. 
This reminded me of an episode years ago (pre-Ghadaffi era) when I was stranded in a sandstorm in Libya, en route to Leptis Magna.   

We were given shelter by nomads in a tent. At that time I had a watercolour set with me, and to show my gratitude for their hospitality, wanted to do a portrait of one of the young daughters.

 I needed water of course, so I went and took some from the camel- stomach-container, which held this precious commodity. When they noticed what I did, I was in big trouble.  A furious father made it clear the precious water was for their survival. I was lucky they did not put us back in the sandstorm.  I should have known better.  Ignorance or stupidity? 

Our ability to communicate somewhat in French saved me, not to speak of my extremely guilty feeling and expression, and ‘pardon, pardon, pardon’. 

Thought of sharing this experience which shook me into awareness after seeing the demonstration by Chris of hand washing, with a very minimum of water, way up there in the Int’l Space Station.