An expat demonstrates the frustrations of using two taps in the UK
If you’ve ever ventured to Britain, you will have noticed that sinks have two taps in the UK. This is a huge cause of frustration to visitors. Due to separate taps for hot and cold water, they find it impossible to get the right temperature.
When washing your hands, you’ll have to make due by flitting between scalding hot and freezing cold water.
But why? I just want a pleasant wash!
The explanation for this seemingly illogical tap system is that hot water used to be considered unsafe for drinking, since it was heated in the tank commonly found in the house’s attic. These tanks could be infected with dead rats, among other things.
These days, although the hot water is most likely perfectly safe, the tradition continues. Even buildings fitted with brand new sinks usually have two separate taps.
While the extreme water temperatures may be unpleasant, no, this is not an excuse to skip hand washing. So use the British technique and make due with cold water (perhaps with some drops of the scathing hot stream in between).
If you are wondering how I get to visit interesting places, the secret is having an international career that allows you the opportunities, freedom and salary to go abroad. You can join us in our free Facebook group, International Career Seekers, where we share tips on how you can kickstart a career that lets you experience somewhere else on this planet.