Call it what you will, the trots, squirts, brown river, the runs, choke a darkie or delhi belly it will happen to you on your travels at sometime or another and what makes it worse is when there isn’t a dunny in sight! It’s not pleasant, sometimes embarrassing, you know those you want to crawl up and die moments but looking back, I can’t believe some of the situations I got myself in.
I was in London riding the tube home from the south side of the city, I lived in Zone 3 on the northside Piccadilly line so it took a fair while to get home. My stomach started gurgling in not a very good manner and I knew it wouldn’t be long before I was going to be in need of a toilet. Thankfully I always kept a tube map in my bag and took it out in search of the nearest tube stop with a toilet, you see not all London tube stops have toilets so it wasn’t as easy as getting off at the next stop. Greenpark was the nearest stop with a loo so that is where I got off and ran frantically to the toilet.
Like a scene from a dodgy b grade comedy my worst fear came to realisation when the old pull chain flusher wouldn’t flush, after pulling the chain in every which way imaginable the remenents of my stomach was still staring back at me. What would anyone do in this situation I filled the bowl with toilet paper and casually walked out to wash my hands. That’s when the hooping and hollering started behind me, it was the cleaner, “What do you think you’re doing, can’t you flush a toilet,” as the blood drained from my face I tried to explain the toilet won’t flush, “so what am I supposed to do about it, clean up after you!” I went over to the toilet and started yanking on the chain to prove to her it was broken, “Get out of my sight, I’ve just cleaned all these toilets,” she yelled. I left pretty quick smart and sat on the tube in a comatosed state all the way home. That was the first and last time I’d been yelled at for using a public toilet in London.
It was only my second day in Egypt, we caught the ferry over from Jordan and were staying in Dahab, a backpackers paradise on the Red Sea. My stomach hadn’t fully customised to the food and when its banging on the door you gotta go, right! I was down on the beach and ran up to the nearby shops, ah a door with a toilet sign on it, you beauty all is good! Oh no the door is locked as I yanked up and down on the door handle. As I turned around and started running to find another toilet Mohammed came out of his bakery which was the nearest shop to the toilet. “You need to use the toilet” he asked “I have a key,” “yes please” I cried.
I went in to thank Mohammed and give his key back. He invited me to sample his goods at the bakery which I must say were delicious. I stayed in Dahab for five days and visited Mohammed every morning for breakfast, he wouldn’t allow me to pay him for the food. We became good mates and he showed me around Dahab when he wasn’t working and even took me shopping at the local markets so I didn’t have to pay ‘tourist’ prices. Some good can come out of an upset stomach!
I was heading home from Slovenia on my final day and pretty much had the full day to kill before my flight out of Austria, I had a hire car and thought it would be great to take the scenic route over the Julian Alps back into Austria.
I was heading into the foot of the alps when suddenly my stomach started misbehaving, why, why now I kept saying to myself, there wasn’t a building in sight let alone a thunderbox. I kept driving on hoping I could hang on until I found a toilet, I knew there was a restaurant on top of the mountain so hopefully I could hold on till then. Nope I wasn’t going to hold out, there was a car park up ahead I pulled in there. Thankfully there was no one else parked there, I raced down to the river below, dropped my draws and let rip. As I was walking back to the car another car pulled up, phew that was close.
The Nile, Egypt
We caught Felucca’s from Aswan to Luxor, a journey which was to take two days up the Nile River. If you aren’t familiar with a Felucca they are kind of like sailing boats, there is just the deck and a sail, we stored our food and drink in an esky and slept in sleeping bags on the deck. It was beautiful crusing along the Nile in forty degree heat. After a few hours sailing up the river and drinking a few beers it was time to go. We pulled into the river bank and I headed up over the bend and thought it best to dig a hole in the sand.
All was going well, I recovered the hole, pulled my pants up and turned around. To my horror there was about ten little Egyptian kids standing there stariing at me with amazement. I hope I didn’t traumatise them and I wonder if they still talk about the girl with the white arse shitting on the riverbank.
Well this is my most recent moment which only happened a few months back. My journey started in Chisinau the capital of Moldova. I was catching an overnight train to Bucharest the capital of Romania so stocked up with food for the journey. As my grasp for the local language was non existant I relied on the pictures on the packets to choose what I was eating. I had a pleasant enough journey and arrived into Bucharest and found my hotel. The day was still young so I set off for a day of sightseeing.
I was walking around the Palace of the Parliament, you know that massive building, which is on the outskirts of the city. Then it suddenly hit me, it came out of no where, I needed to go and I needed to go fast. With butt cheeks firmly clenched I raced for the subway, I knew there were toilets in the shopping centre two stops away. I jumped on the train and exited the train at my stop, the trouble with this stop it was under a big park and there were exits to every corner of the park. I was in extreme pain using every muscle I could muster to hold an embarrasing situation underwraps. I took an exit which I thought was the one to the shopping centre and as I came out above I looked for the shopping centre, oh no it was on the other side of the park! I nearly cried I wasn’t going to make it. I waddled along on the footpath, only moving my legs from the knees down.
There comes a moment in everyones life when you just have to let go I thought to myself, there is nothing I can do about it. I was pratically crawling at this stage in complete agony and then I saw it, like a mirage in the desert, there was a port-a-loo just up ahead behind the tree, what was it doing there and did I really care. With every muscle in my body as tight as could be I stumbled into the loo and just about cried with joy at the instant relief. As I sat there with the biggest smile on my face, I reached for the toilet paper, nooooo there isn’t any…..