I have posted before on how Singaporeans are not always direct and obvious when it comes to restrooms. Sometimes they are just downright obscure! Yesterday I had an unwelcome adventure with a bathroom, such that I thought it was worth sharing.
I know it was/is to be expected, but I am still surprised some days with how much my bladder control (or lack thereof!) and capacity has changed due to Little Randles. My new motto is that if there is a restroom nearby, use it! Even if you recently used one… because you don’t know when you’ll need it again. Probably soon.
Yesterday I had an OB appointment. Of course, due to the regularly required urine test, I emptied my bladder at the beginning of the appointment. As I left my OB’s office, I saw that the elevator was right at my level. A tiny thought somewhere in the back of my head said I should head for the bathroom instead of the convenient elevator. Since I didn’t want to stand waiting for the elevator, I decided to ignore my conscience and I rode the elevator down from the 14th floor. Bad choice.
By the time I was on the first floor, I realized that the bathroom need was becoming more imminent. No bathrooms were in sight. <sigh>
Good news: there was a mall right around the corner! (It’s hard to avoid malls when you’re on Orchard Road!)
Within two minutes I was out of the hospital, in the mall, and searching for a bathroom. I spotted a sign with the familiar man/woman symbol and a little arrow and set off on a mission. After walking several hundred yards I found another similar sign pointing me in another direction. I turned and followed that sign. Eventually I came to another corner with another sign. Keep going…
Finally after about 4 signs telling me to turn this way or that I came upon the bathroom. By now, I really was in need of the facility and “relieved” to find it!
My relief was quickly replaced with frustration and a little bit of anger.
I don’t get angry that easily… But when a pregnant woman has been searching for your bathroom for several minutes and using up precious time walking in circles, the last thing she wants to find is that the bathroom is CLOSED!
I couldn’t believe it! Closed! After all that work!? Inconceivable! (I was too preoccupied with my emotions and physical needs to stop and take a picture.)
So, without a moment to lose, I did my best to overcome my disappointment and set off. I figured my best bet, since I had already explored virtually the entire floor of the mall, was to head for a different floor.
I made it to a different floor and headed in the general direction of where the bathroom had been on the other floor; all the while I was keeping my eye out for signs. A few hallways and turns later and I was at my destination.
Then I realized that they had set up a desk with a person in the entrance to the bathroom. I also became aware of the fact that there was a sign indicating that you had to pay 20 cents.
I know that in this part of the world it is not unheard of to charge admission for bathrooms. That being said, the only bathrooms I have paid for in Singapore have been public bathrooms not associated with other buildings. This was in a mall for crying out loud!
Praise the Lord I had a few coins left in my wallet (I had recently been on a “use my coins up” vendetta, so I had been doing good in getting rid of most of my coins).
I paid the lady my dues and rushed off to a waiting stall.
It was an adventure that should never had occurred. But it did. And I hope it makes someone laugh. Even if it’s just myself looking back on the event that finds it all a bit humorous.
Of course, in the stall, what greets me but:
I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Apparently the people that designed this bathroom (and had the audacity to charge me for it) didn’t realize how when a woman wants to go, the last thing on her mind is whether or not she should climb up on top of the toilet. I guess I should remember that it is probably in the context of “squatties” in SE Asia. Maybe others don’t have the proper training to know not to squat if it isn’t a squatty potty!
To finish off my post, I will leave you with a anecdote from last night.
Yesterday evening, Andrew and I marooned ourselves on the bed with the aircon (A.C.) on and watched a movie on the laptop. Even though it was a good movie (Armageddon), I had to pause the movie about 3 times during the course of it to use the restroom. Now, maybe it was less of a physical need and more of a psychological affect of knowing that the bathroom was so close and I could use it… but for whatever reason I had to interrupt the movie at the most inopportune moments. Andrew made the playful comment, “I guess we shouldn’t go see a movie in the movie theater any time soon.” Thanks for understanding, Andrew 🙂
P.S. – In defense of the unpredictable bladder – I slept for 8+ hrs last night without getting up to use the bathroom once.