Galapagos,  Santa Cruz

Cephalopod-Related Toilet Problems

Probably not the sort of the thing you see every day. It’s incredible the sorts of problems that cease to amaze you once you’ve been living on a boat for a little while:

So, I was pumping away the other day flushing the head when I felt some resistance. It cleared (thankfully) but then the water coming in turned grey/black. I pumped some more, it cleared, I shrugged and thought nothing more of it.

Two days later I woke up and went for a pee. As soon as I opened the door to the head compartment I was affronted by a very obnoxious odour. ‘One of us must have forgotten to flush properly’ I thought, peed, and pumped away vigorously thinking the whole thing was done and sorted. Not so. Sarah went in there a couple of minutes later and the smell was back. I attempted to find the source.
Following vigorous pumping, the source was kind enough to reveal itself. Or a bit of itself anyway. Two long, limp tentacles extended down into the bowl. Attempts to extract the deceased owner failed. It would have to come out the other way……….
We detached the intake hose and filled the bowl in the hope that the water would run in reverse and flush it out. No luck. After some brief discussion, a plan was formed. One of those plans that Baldrick might have described as being fox-like in the magnitude of it’s cunning. We employed the services of a wet/dry vacuum cleaner. Strategically-placed kitchen towel around the inside edge of the bowel maximised suction in the area that our resident was occupying. The ‘thunk’ as it was sucked through the hose and into the vacuum cleaner was wonderfully satisfying.
Upon close inspection of the contents of the vacuum cleaner, it appeared that a small octopus had taken up residence in the inlet hose for the head. It didn’t turn out well for either the octopus or us but I feel the octopus received the worst end of the stick. Imagine being happily settled in your new home only to be sucked up into someone’s toilet!
We had a good chortle about it afterwards. I’m sure there must be a website somewhere where one can type in a problem they are having with their toilet and an ‘online plumber’ will respond with a solution to the symptoms they are experiencing. I’m sorely tempted to find it if such a thing exists and see what their advice to ‘octopus stuck in flushing system’ might be Smiling face with smiling eyes.
The moment when the situation began to reveal itself:
Tenticly Toilet
The cunning Plan:
low_toilet hoover
The unfortunate (for the octopus) result:
Head Octopus in Vacuum

One Comment

  • Paul Terceira

    Hi Alex and Sarah,
    Monique and I have been really enjoying the blogs. It’s crap weather here at the moment, so we are catching up on the admin and the list of things we have been putting off……like commenting on the blogs.
    We had a real giggle about the dive boat incident. A very similar situation occurred in Guadeloupe… poor French, I tried to explain “Too Close!….and the wind moves us all around at anchor” He fully understood and replied with the “French Shrug”……sure enough….collision during the night while we were watching a DVD…..and a big chunk out of the transom. Of course, nobody was aboard their boat at the time….they were ashore having dinner. When they finally returned, hours later, I had to assist the owner in relocating……his guests had no clew what to do…and he was pretty much on his own as a result……my lack of French technical vocabulary meant it took way too long to explain a simple maneuver…..and where to avoid the fish pots…..and how much chain to lay out….my head hurt at the end of 2 hours…….and I realized I am way too kind…….so….Monique and I feel your pain !…….and the thrill of the adventure. Please keep writing, we love each of your blogs……..Paul and Monique “Chelonia”

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