HoydenSeek’s Weblog

hoy·den: a boisterous, bold, and carefree girl; a tomboy + seek: to go in search or quest of

An Acute Case of Wanderlust: Gastrointestinal Symptoms and Hazards March 21, 2008

Filed under: Travel — suzanne turner @ 3:30 am

I don’t know about you, but when I travel I love coming home again- not because I like staying home- I usually miss where I traveled already. I love coming home to my own bed, my own kitchen, but most of all, my own bathroom. There is a certain shape of your own toilet seat, that familiar feel of the exact water pressure in your shower, and knowing exactly how much hot water time you have before you’re rinsing your hair in cold water.

Traveling this time is different. I have no home to go home to. Lease is up, we’re flying free, which feels great  99% of the time, but I’m having to develop the skills of a modern nomad- some of which, I’d never considered. Maybe it’s because I’m a girl. Maybe I just like the creature comforts of daily life. Whatever it is, it drives me to maintain a running, ranked list of bathrooms I use. Each and every friend’s place, bar and hotel has its pros and cons, and its good to know the ins & outs.

There’s quite the array of rest stops and powder rooms in these parts of Wyoming. There’s Mingles, the billiards spot of choice offering free help-youself nachos and buttered popcorn! Here the stall doors don’t latch or even close all the way- one last resort stall has no door at all. But there are a lot of funny comments written inside the stall, which is always entertaining. Perhaps I’ll attach a picture, but I’ll have to blur all the phone numbers!

Then there’s the one-room-only types, such as at Third Street Bar, where you have to anticipate needing to go in advance because girls are always lined up and sometimes just end up going in the men’s. You can hear them hopping around waiting outside the door, so you attempt to multitask- flush while activating the first motion-detected paper towel to advance; wash hands while checking hair & face conditions.

Then there’s the terrible ones- the kind that give you a heart murmur as they take forever to swirl around and make you feel like they may not ever flush at all. Even worse is when they don’t! Ah! You want to announce “I didn’t do it! It’s just pee, your toilet sucks!”

Just to exacerbate everything, you also have the wonderful traveler’s adventure/nightmare of navigating new food and drinks. Of course you have the random tiny bugs and bacteria in the water in the mountain streams, Central America, Asia or wherever, sure. But no one ever thinks of the silent stalkers- airline food, the excessive Tequila drinking, the competitive nature that compells you to play one more game of beer pong for the title, the greasy 24-hour diners that sound like a good idea at the time. 

What did we ever do to Montezuma anyway? And why won’t he just stay in one place? How can he be everywhere at once? And how can he possess our bodies, doesn’t that somehow violate the law of impenetrability? Is he the devil’s answer to the Holy Spirit? For that matter, maybe that’s what Hell is! That’s why everyone’s always so hot and sweaty and miserable. It’s just a constant state of all the symptoms of the Pepto Bismol Song. (Nausea, heartburn indigestion, upset stomach, diarrhea!) And maybe just for extra torture, Gilbert Godfried, Fran Drescher and Kelly Osbourne are all there acting out and singing the Pepto commercial, but you can never buy any. If God really wanted us to be good, he should show us hell. If we actually saw that Pepto spot… whew! Serious deterrent.

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