Stephanie from Where In the World Am I is hosting this week's State Department Blog Roundup. This week's "optional talking point" is overseas/international bathrooms. I have nothing to say about that, since we have yet to be posted overseas. I do have a bathroom story, though. And it ain't pretty.
Let me start out by acknowledging that I am a germaphobe (I know this is no surprise to anyone who has ever met me). I always carry hand santizer, try to never touch railings or door handles in public places, and turn water off/on in public bathrooms with a paper towel. I know! I'm going to be awesome in a developing country. Anyway, my story takes place on a ratty old baseball field on Whidbey Island. Mitch was coaching Henry's t-ball team and I was there cheering them on with my then-four year-old girls. Now, whenever we go anywhere, I make sure everyone uses the bathroom at home before we leave to minimize the possibility that we'll have to enter a public restroom. I am aware that this is a ridiculous fantasy when dealing with children. Grace started whining that she really, really had to go potty. I looked around the only thing I saw was a dirty old Honey Bucket.
We were only a five minute drive from home, so I tried to convince Grace that she could hold it and I would zip her home in the car to pee in the comfort of her own bathroom, but no, she had to go. Now. So, after a stern lecture outside the Honey Bucket instructing the girls NOT TO TOUCH ANYTHING, we slipped inside. Olivia was hiding behind my legs while I was held Grace up so her skin wouldn't come in contact with anything. The tension inside that box was crackling. The girls could sense this was a Serious Event and were appropriately solemn. As Grace finished her business, I slipped a bottle of hand sanitizer out of my pocket and handed it behind me, not daring to take my eyes off Grace lest she fall in or touch something. "Clean your hands really well, Olivia." I said. I kept waiting for her to take the bottle, but she didn't. Finally, I turned around to see what the deal was. There was my daughter, rubbing a dirty urinal cake (which happened to look just like a bar of soap) all over her hands and arms, making sure to do a really good job. And then I died.