No idea what A TABO is? Welcome to the site of the Filipino promdi. It means that you are our guest or just learning our culture. A Pinoy who does not know what tabo is? Oh it means you're being Filipino is about to be completed now... just read on.
Tabo is a water dipper, a long handled container for water or liquids, usually found in the comfort rooms (banyo) of the Filipino. It is one of the basic necessities in a Filipino household. Partnered by a pail and more often used by the female specie of the clan. A very versatile everyday tool - used to scoop water for whatever purpose - from showering to washing specific areas of the body.
Tabo helps us clean. And helps us save trees by using water instead of toilet papers. And we feel better cleaned if we use water down there instead of just plain tp's. In a Filipino restroom, it is very typical to find a pale of water (called timba or balde) along with the tabo. In the Philippines, especially in the province, we still have toilets that are flushed with water manually. Hence, the need for the pair of balde and tabo.
I believe it has been a part of Filipino culture and has earned its place in history, beacause it has also evolved with time.
- Even if I have not seen one used before, I think the first tabo used is made from coconut shell (bao). I could imagine Filipino of old times, using the coconut shell tabo scooping water out of an earthen jar or tapayan. (Now, it took a great effort for me to find one and shoot this photo)
- Empty cans. With the introduction of cans, canned goods such as juices, some households then uses cans. This one, I have used when I was young.
- Then, as time progressed, we have empty plastic containers of oil (motor oil) the same size as the can of milk powder. Circa 70's or 80's, this is the common tabo found in most Filipino restrooms. This does not have any handle.
- The plastic revolution also influenced the tabo evolution. The sophisticated look and version of a tabo nowadays is made of plastic and has a long handle. It comes in various sizes and colors usually in coordination with the water pale. now in modern times, we can now find toilet papers in restrooms.
- A fearless forecast of what's next: Battery operated or rechargeable tabo. Why not a remote controlled tabo? Or a tabo that is directly connected to a water hose, no need to dip it in a timba?
I'm quite sure, tabo will still evolve just like Filipinos cope up with the changing time. Everytime we move to a foreign land to relocate, visit or check in on the best hotels, we do miss the tabo. So do not be surprised if you will find the good ol' tabo in the luggage of a Filipino jetsetter!
I have never seen any other race that gives utmost worship to the tabo - but the Filipino. Well, as far as I know, we are known to be one of the frequent bathers and best smelling people of the society! hehehe
Salute and bow ...
to the Queen Tabo for its rightful place in our household!