Have you ever wondered, on a freezing April day like this, why is there only glacial cold water in the sinks of the campus toilets? Do you ever skip washing your hands with just because you do not want them to get frostbitten?

The fact that there has always been only cold water in the faucets of Erasmus is confirmed by the project manager of C building reconstruction Paul Halkes. “To heat up hot water requires a lot of energy, so probably the choice to use only cold water is purely based on costs”.

Environment or Culture?

Justine Whittern, the communications officer for Greening RSM, adds that it might also be to save water and thus be more environmentally-friendly. “Even though it’s not quite enjoyable, I encourage everyone not to skip hand washing – it’s something everyone should do”.

Maybe there is not a logical explanation and it is merely a cultural difference. Some would say that it is indeed the Dutch ‘thriftiness’ shining through or it is a way to deter foreigners, but for a country that is not exactly known for its great weather (think cold and wet), the single cold water tap in public toilets will forever remain an unpleasant mystery to many internationals. MD