Oh my goody God, I am exhausted! I just got back from working in Southend. Whilst busy working, I saw that my website guy Naqeeb has messaged me asking about my latest blog. Obviously I was thinking to reply to him using one of the most overly used words in the world, which is the ‘F’ world. If you ask me what I think the other most used word is, it’s “oh my God…” and I have confidence that it has been use in many scenarios from the holy intention to faking it.
But don’t worry, I didn’t actually tell that to his face “Ohh-F- you, I’m busy!” because he is, after all, a brilliant guy and I really like working with him. Also, I promised to send him my weekly blog the day before but I was absolutely immersed with work and I haven’t had the time to think about a topic to write. However I need something for Naqeeb, so I thought I would write whatever ‘crap’ that pops into my head and just go with it.
Today, when I finally had a bathroom break and was hovering just above the toilet because toilet sharing is just yucky (and believe me, it’s not easy to hover-half-squat when one is just over 5 foot tall!), I was thinking about how I survived village life during my first few years growing up – we didn’t even have a proper toilet! When I say no proper toilet, I really mean it. I just had to find a bush and do the business, and don’t even ask about toilet roll. In the modern world you have the option of 2-ply or 3-ply-quilted-aloe vera-bum smoothing toilet roll. Ours was quite similar except it was more like learning which leaf didn’t give the ‘nettle sting’ side effect.
We then had a toilet that looked like a tiny shed that was made from an old rusty tin roof. Inside there was just a deep hole, and after a while it was just gross! Maggots swimming in the pool of poop! I was always scared that the wooden floor would give way. We also upgraded from leaves to old newspaper. Hey! It’s an educational and very informative moment – I get to read current affairs at the same time. This is also the time when my term of ‘eat shit’ (makan taik) came from. Newspapers usually print people faces and for fun, I would love to choose a particular face area and use it to wipe! I can’t remember the first time I use a western style toilet but I remember my primary school had a squat toilet and each week, a few students were tasked to wash the toilets.
Despite the bush toilet, the most awkward toilet situation I ever been in, and definitely number 1 on my list, was in a place just on the outskirts of Beijing, China. It was a public toilet with a few cubicles, however the wall and the door between each cubicle was only about my waist height. It was a squat toilet, but anybody from the other cubicles who was standing up would be able to see everybody else’s business. I thought that was weird but nothing more uncomfortable than when a particular woman, amongst locals who were queuing up to use the cubicle that I was in, stood right in front of me – fully engaging in eye contact as if that would make me pee faster. It made me feel like my first day in prison!
I know this may be a distasteful topic considering I’m in the food business and talking about toilets, but let’s be positive here – at least my crap was real!