Public toilets at train stations or festival grounds can be quite busy with a higher chance of queues. Having to queue to use these facilities is never a pleasant experience as you continuously have to deal with the stench and wondering how much more time the current user has before completing their business. On the other hand, as a current user of a facility, you are careful and quite conscious with the sound generated as you empty your bowel. You flush to subdue the sound and use the air freshener a few times to ensure the toilet is conducive for the next user.
Doing a number two during busy periods could make you rush things more than usual. If you fall on the considerate side, there is that constant worry for those in the queue. The thought and worry about them having an accident whilst waiting could trouble you. This culminates with a rapid use of the facility with the awkwardness of coming face to face with the next user.
Whilst being next in line is a safe spot and a guarantee you’ll be doing your business sooner than later. A few thoughts run through your mind as you wait rather patiently. Who is in that toilet? You ask yourself. Do they have a high level of hygiene to ensure no remnants are left in the toilet? These thoughts leave your mind preoccupied as you wait for your turn. It almost feels like a blind date, unsure of the person behind the door doing their business. You may fall guilty of judging them based on the length of time they spent in the toilet and the offensive nature of the odour the produce. The sound of a flush sends the excitement in you a notch higher as it suddenly feels your time to complete your business is near. As they buckle, you smile knowing it is a matter of few seconds.
The door is unlocked and there are two characters in the toilet episode. The user opens the door and sympathises with the next person in line. Wondering how the individual will cope with the smell they are leaving behind. On the other side of the coin, you are unsure about what you are walking into. You know it smells but are prepared for a potential splatter or remnant. It almost feels like an Olympic relay, where the exchange of the Baton is a pivotal moment. Athletes have been disqualified or lost their competitive grounds as a result of a poor transition or exchange. With the toilet experience, that moment of leaving a facility for the next user could be rather awkward. Eye contact is usually avoided and a friendly smile of scare supply. Why pay a smile to someone leaving you to suffer defecation stench? The subtle discomfort of seeing someone walk into the aftermath of your bowel activity leaves your social being too stifled for a smile.
The toilet Baton exchange or change of guards usually takes place in the busiest public and shared facilities. The best way to avoid the awkwardness of this experience is by doing your business during off-peak moments or locating a less busy unit.
image credit: oodegr.com
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