What, I hear you ask, is a vault toilet?
– Is it a place where those who have incredible wealth stored in a bank, upon needing to examine said wealth and suddenly being caught short in the excitement of the moment, are able to relieve themselves without leaving sight of their treasures?
– Or perhaps a toilet that requires a certain degree of gymnastic proficiency and an exquisite sense of timing?
– Yet still, a poorly spelled edifice that emits regular bursts of electricity through the seating area, encouraging participants not to dwell about their business, and thus abbreviating the waiting queue’s dances of desperation?
Pray, dear reader, read on and all will be revealed!
I have refrained thus far from reporting on matters of the throne. However, it is a certainty that on a long trip, involving much camping and changing of both climatic and nutritional conditions, that the restroom as our American friends are wont to call it (an ill advised name for certain performances, I assure you) will feature prominently in our thoughts on more than one occasion.
There have been attempts to create a zen like state of mind before entering
and to reassure those locationally challenged
(though I feel naming your only option “Choride Outhouse” causes its own set of anxieties)
and yet it was an unmarked (save for the title “toilet”) example that inside its unassuming exterior held the Rolls Royce of experiences.
Out on the trails on the rim of a canyon, or deep in the forest of a remote campsite, we have all used the flushless toilet. Essentially an ordinary looking bowl, whose lid once lifted reveals an almighty drop. Often not the most perfumed of experiences but on the whole not as bad as first feared. Once the job is completed, rise and replace the lid and the event is finished. The deluxe models have a hand sanitizer such as those found in hospitals.
It was on a hot, sweaty day, that my opinion of these basic edifices changed forever. The need had been building for some time when we spotted salvation. I hurried inside, lifted the lid……and the drop was less than half the usual depth. This was not good, the pile of previous content was much closer than normal. But there was nothing to be done about it, the time had come and the job was overdue. I sat. I concentrated and I listened as the wind outside swirled faster in the canyon and buffeted my surroundings. Suddenly I was aware of a waft of cool air gently caressing my under carriage. It had risen from the depths, propelled by the force from outside. My dear reader, I have to tell you it was a most pleasurable experience, especially on such a sticky day. It was some time before I became aware that my companions were growing worried at the length of my incarceration.
They say don’t judge a book by its cover, and I urge you to apply the same discretion to the humble toilet. A well placed vault model, on a suitably sunny day, scores over a fancy flush every time.
Not only that, but they are always private. You cannot always say that for some of our more modern establishments, and the occasional bare-faced cheek of others.
If you enjoyed this article, please share it with your friends by clicking one of the social media icons below; then, why not scroll further down and sign up to the site? – and finally, please do leave a comment or share one of your own special experiences!