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I was sightseeing the town of Leh (Ladakh), when the urge hit. I had to pee.
Don’t you just hate when the percolating pee-pot hits FULL, when you’re on the road with nowhere to go…? Well, maybe not nowhere…
An employee’s toilet in Leh
I thought I’d outwit my surroundings. I went to a well-known telecommunications store in India (whose name shall remain anonymous) and asked for their employee John. They were kind to oblige.
So I wasn’t handed a corporate bathroom key, but company toilets can’t be that bad, right?
“Ha ha! ” I thought, “A narrow escape from the horrible reeks and squatting messes of a public pot!” I felt aglow, inwardly cackling with travel genius. I was brilliant!
The visual shock of a rudimentary dirt hole through the floor hit me
A rectangle hole cut from a soft (termite-eaten) wood floor sat alone in tiny room on the third floor of the store’s building. The hole fell to a 20 foot drop, where you could see evidence of those who’d gone before you. The wood around the hole bowed and creaked when I straddled it.
Who needs a flush chain when you’ve got a shovel? Just throw a little dirt over your business after your done.
This was a native Ladakhi toilet and it was only the start of my using one. I am told that it gets so cold that the poo freezes and turns into manure.
Damn you India, you’re ruining all my delicate sensibilities!