WARNING: DO NOT READ THIS ARTICLE WHILE EATING!
Remember my first entry in Kyrgyzstan, I went to a toilet near the border. I heard DONG-DONG-DONG sound, " No way! Did I just drop my mobile in the toilet again?" One year ago, I dropped my mobile in the toilet in He Huan Mountain, since then, I decided to get a waterproof mobile-iphone 7. But this time it doesn’t matter waterproof or not, this is a toilet with a deep hole in the ground! I couldn’t even see the bottom. I searched my pocket, looked into the black hole, I was frustrated. My highest frequency of using the toilet during travel was in Tajikistan. I got fever and diarrheal disease on the way to capital-Dushanbe. I went to one hospital in Dushanbe, 2 hospitals in Iran. During these 9 days, It was so important for me to use the toilet. Toilets are friends in my life, I never know what kind of toilets I will meet the next. One of the things you would not miss while traveling is using the toilet. You get culture shock from it. It’s a big event of life. Here I will introduce my own toilet experiences.
Japan: Definitely five-star enjoyment, in addition to automatic washing, warm seat, turn on Otohime(音姬, a device attached on the wall. You can turn on music while using the toilet) you can fart at the same time, no one will hear you. Although I also encountered squat toilet in the old cafe, the overall is clean and retro style. There’s no worry at all to use the toilet in Japan.
Thailand: Most Thais are civilized and polite, you can see squat toilets in the most gas stations or service areas, they are clean and odorless. You can also see a small pool filled with water in every toilet. I’m not sure if they use water to clean their butt. I didn’t see any flushing facility on the toilet. Everyone will be responsible to wash away the stuff on their own.
Laos: I only stayed in a remote village for seven days. The squat toilets were in small cabins out of the main house. Every household would lift buckets of water to the toilet in the early morning. The floor was on the land, no concrete. After using the toilet I flushed it with water in the bucket. Oh, by the way, toilet paper was uncommon in this village.
Cambodia: Rural area was similar to Laos. Due to a large number of tourists, they have the better facilities in the city. But in that time I stayed in a temple, they provided clean toilets.
China: With the widening gap between rich and poor, it is full of all kinds of toilets. There is a special one, toilet with a long ditch – there is a long ditch in the toilet room, it extends to every toilet, you can see people’s poop “pass by" your toilet. Toilet without door or with very low cubicles- you will see everyone when you stand up. One day I participated in rafting activities, at the destination we went to shower rooms, all the rooms had no doors, everyone was brave enough to take off their clothes. Department store, hotels will have a normal toilet. Places with crowds, trash can were always full, or flushing system wasn’t working fine. Of course, sometimes there are clean toilets. The biggest problem for toilets in China is that there is no hanging hook. There are two cities are easy to find the public toilet sign, the old town of Guangzhou and Beijing Hutong. Fortunately, China just announced a toilet revolution for tourists.
Kyrgyzstan: It was more comfortable to solve problems outdoor, I mean in nature. I would describe Kyrgyz toilets with a word- a hole. I remember the first time I went to the toilet and hear the dong-dong-dong sound, at the moment I thought I’m done. I couldn’t found iPhone in all pockets, " No way! Did I just lost my mobile in the toilet again?" later I found a cellphone when I rummaged in the backpack, then realized that sound was poop falling in the hole. How to recognized toilet in the countryside – usually located few meters away from the house, a small rectangular wooden cabin. They dug a large pothole, stacked a few pieces of wood, and then keep a hole for everyone. All this is too convenient, not even the flushing system or water, but extremely stinky, flies fly around. There are public toilets in the busy town, usually I also reluctantly to use them, I didn’t need to ask where the toilet is, I could smell them few meters away. Most of them had no cubicles, only a few holes in the cement floor, face to face with people, after using that, I could feel all stinky air in my lungs. Soviet-era apartments – the toilet is separate from the bathroom, like in Japan. Kyrgyzstan is a scenic place. To be honest, it’s better to go on the field and enjoy the view at the same time.
Tajikistan: The condition was similar to Kyrgyzstan. You could find a super comfortable toilet in the tourist center of the town in Pamir, Khorog. According to a friend’s experience, the worst toilet let she had ever used was in Kazakhstan. All the poop was on the floor, causing her to go out of the toilet!
Iran: Where there’s a mosque, there’s a toilet. Or use the toilet in the restaurant. Most of them are squat toilets. When you are asking for the toilet, use the word “W.C." the other asian countries use “Toilet".
to be continued…