Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Antigua, Guatemala: The Scourge of Pee



I learned something in Antigua that was gobsmacking.


Antigua, Guatemala. April 2016.



Men's habit of peeing on the exterior building walls in Antigua is damaging the buildings. Antigua is a UNESCO World Heritage Center, so this is serious business.

It's not just in Antigua. Consider Germany's Ulm Minister, the church with the tallest tower in the world. "Persistent peeing is damaging the historic structure."

Peeing on the limestone walls of the 250-year-old Alamo in Texas is a serious crime because of the damage it does to the historic structure.

In Berlin, the city created a force of "urine police" to protect historic buildings. "Human urine is so abrasive and corrosive that, over time, it acts like a sandblaster," said a scientist.

It's also a problem in Chester, England, which sits atop Roman ruins.

And in Plymouth, England, for a 250-year old synagogue.

There is apparently a Facebook page that has photos of men caught in the act of peeing on walls in Antigua. It's a shaming page. I haven't been able to track it down.


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