Wednesday, June 3, 2009


I'm sure you know what this truck and it's driver do for a living ,I call it the s--t sucker and Ciejay gives me a dirty look and tells me to be sweet, and then, I remember that the real name for them is the Honey Wagon. It's not that I am really glad to see them , but there are certain times after not seeing him for a couple months , when the wind is blowing just right,up the road and past the neighbors house ,that I can tell it's time for the s--t sucker to do his thing. Most of us in Thailad are not on a sewer system, so in it's place we dig a hole about four foot deep and put in a concrete coulvert with a lid and a small hole in the lid for the hose to pump the honey out, they charge about 200 baht for this service , and I got smart and put in a double size one soooo they charge me 400 baht , but the good part of it is I don't need to have mine pumped but only twice a year. My neighbors have the small ones and they need them pumped about every two months, and some try to go as long as they can to save money and thats when the tell,tell smell comes blowing up the hill to the farangs house and Ciejay calls the s--t sucker and tells him to come up our road and start blowing his horn , to get the neighbors attention and most of the time it works . Since we live in a small village and most of the homes are really old , the folks just run their gray and sometimes other water out back of their houses into a ditch and this not only stinks but it is a perfect breding place for the mosquitos, when we remodeled our place we put in two 500 gal concrete colverts in the ground for the gray water and also put in a drain field by removing a lot of the top soil and putting in a load of gravel and then covering it back up works great and I showed all our neighbors what we did and they all except one had a gray water tank buried and put in a small drain field , and it really keeps the populatiom of mosquitos down, and we went around and gathered up all the old tires and hauled them off(you know the Thais just throw them out back or put them around their plants (mosquito heaven).I even bought a few of them the decorative bricks to replace the tires , I have to say I have never been pushey for my neighbors to clean their yards and pick up and haul off , but as I cleaned out all the stuff left by the former owners and cleaning up the yard and sides of our street (dirt road) , they all begain to do the same and what a difference ,in how our small neighborhood looks and smells ,today, as opposed to four years ago.I know you've heard the ole saying (monkey see monkey do )not calling anybody a monkey here ,just using the saying . and it works better than trying to change the way they do things and how they keep their yards and the street looking . Amazing ,when we painted our house the next thing we saw ,was they all painted their homes to. I love my neighbors and I think they like me a little too. Malcolm ---- And it smells a lot better in our neighbor hood , until it's time for the s--t sucker truck to come and "clear the air"so to speak. Looks like I started rambling on there for a little , but thats what happens when a ex-preacher trys to tell a story. "forgive please."


Mike said...

Hi malcolm there is many a tale I could tell and have told on MTF about the s**t man (as I call him).

Prior to arriving in the LOS I had never experienced septic tanks (UK term) so I had no idea. I soon discovered that the Thais didn't either.

Research taught me about drain fields etc but I actually have three tanks in the garden, none of which had a drain field. Unfortunately I couldn't install a drain field from any of the tanks because the building had progressed to far.

Anyway when I first came here as soon as the toilet started to glug I sent for the s**t man, about ever 14 days!!

Cost me 350 baht each time. Which no doubt made the s**t man happy! I then did a bit of thinking, installed air vents to the tanks and let nature take its course (bacteria).

Unfortunately we have a high water table here so natural leeching varies dependent on the season.

However I have just managed to go 5 months between emptying. Of course instead of emptying 90% water my friend with the blue truck had to pump out some real****.

I am quite happy but the s**t man is not!

Martin in Bulgaria said...

We have the same thing here Malcolm a truck to suck, but no one has the moneyh to pay them in the villages so the sewerage just overflows, it's not so bad though as it's not on industrial levels and drains away quite easily.
What a job, but someone has to do it.
Take care

Tipper said...

Malcolm-I found this post very interesting! You live so differently there than here.

Martyn said...

Malcolm they say where there's muck there's money and reading the prices quoted then by Thai standards the sh*t man ain't doing too bad.

I have seen the sh*t man pass through Wilai's village many a time but I have never been there when he has visited our house. I know Wilai puts some kind of salt down our toilet and flushes it in to the system, but I don't know what it exactly does. I guess it erodes the muck and neutralizes the smell but being from England then this is all new to me. Perhaps you can help on that one. Best wishes from England.

The Frogblogger said...

Septic tanks eh, same at my place in rural France. But what amazed me was the price you are charged, just 400 baht to empty a large one? What's that, about 10$? Here in France it costs me 200 euros, about 25 times the price you are charged!

Mind you the version they have in France is supposed to be a system that eats its own sh*t to put it bluntly, and only needs emptying every two or three years or so. Everything runs into it, including from sinks and baths etc, and a run-off pipe leads 100 yards away where there is a sink hole and the water dissipates into the ground. (It's in an orchard, and we get some huge cherries and apples! ;-)

Talen said...

I remember the first time I saw the Sh*t man in my girls village. All the kids came out running and laughing following the truck. I had to laugh because when the ice cream man came by a little later he was all but ignored lol.