Much as I like to complain about things here at Widget Co., I have to say that we have it pretty good. Take our restrooms for example. Always clean and they even provide air freshener spray. My only complaints would be these: 1) why is the air freshener always "food" scented? Ewww! I can't enjoy dutch apple pie anymore. 2) why do we get automatic toilets, but not automatic sinks and doors? You touch the (presumably dirty) toilet flusher BEFORE you wash your hands, but you have to use your now clean hands to shut off the water and to open the door. But really, they're pretty good here.
Other places don't do such a good job with the restrooms. My favorite (read: least favorite) restrooms are in airports. Blech! There's always at least one toilet that's overflowing, and there's paper (toilet and towel) everywhere.
Once I've found a relatively clean stall, I get in, struggling to bring my luggage in with me. Would it really be so hard to make the stalls 2 feet deeper so we don't have to put our roller-bags on our laps while peeing? Once I'm in, I start looking for the seat covers. Apparently, this is more a California thing than a national trend. Here in California, they're ubiquitous -- you never find a stall without them, unless it just hasn't been refilled. More commonly, though, it's so overfilled that you waste two or three covers trying to get one out of the holder intact! But when I travel to other cities, there's no seat covers, so I have to use the old trick my mom taught me, where you put strips of toilet paper on the seat for protection (and then hover over the seat anyway -- the paper is just there in case you fall).
Then I try to use the toilet. I'm sitting there all relaxed for a second (because I can't be bothered to hover), and suddenly the toilet flushes. And it doesn't just flush downward like a good little toilet, it flushes so hard that it sprays water (clean? I dunno!) upward. Great. Now my whole butt is wet.
Eventually, I start trying to get some toilet paper. It seems inevitable that I need to start a new roll. You know, that roll that is the size of a car tire? First I try to find the end. That's not easy to do, since it takes an hour to go around the whole tire. Once I find it, I have to unglue it. Why does it need to be glued? Is this a safety feature? Maybe it's a choking hazard? So eventually I get the edge unglued and pull. I get a strip, not a whole square. The strip then goes around and around until I have a streamer fit for a high school homecoming decoration in my hand. Lovely. Once I finally free the whole width of the roll, I pull to get some paper. I get a square. Then the roll jams and I get nothing else. I push on the roll a few more times, get another square, and keep going. And men wonder why women take too long in the bathroom.
Then it's time to dry my hands after washing them. I try to do the environmentally friendly thing by using the blow dryer (pushing the button with my elbow to keep my newly washed hands clean). I get three seconds of hot air and it shuts off. The instructions on these things need to be updated to ensure people know how to use them properly. They should read as follows: 1) push button; 2) rub hands under air stream; 3) wipe hands on pants. That's what we all end up doing, right?
The Tuscan Child by Rhys Bowen
8 hours ago