Sunday, October 22, 2006
a note on toilets
there's often not much to be said about public toilets other than "gross." new zealand is an exception. this is a country where there is a national competition for the best public toilet, a country that actually has a toilet that is a tourist attraction. here it seems that one can never be more than a few hundred meters away from a local loo, some of which are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. yes, a portion of these potties require some sort of cash payment in exchange for relief, but it is a small price (literally, at 40 cents). i will never understand how the incontinent survived in the toilet-starved new york cityscape, where if one wants to use a toilet that is not his own he must buy a soft drink or fries to go. new zealand by comparison is a toilet utopia. not only are facilities ubiquitous, but they are clean, or are at least cleaned frequently. they are always stocked with toilet paper and the soap dispensers are filled as often as they aren't. it's a comforting feeling as a traveller knowing that, when you need it, salvation is always just around the corner.