Some dreams really do come true

8 Apr

I’m sure you’re all well aware by now of my love-hate relationship with the public restroom.  Actually, it’s more of a hate-hate relationship.  :all over body shudder:  Well, my dear friends, I’m about to tell you a tale so wild, so beyond the realm of good reason, so un-frickin-believable, that you will all most likely dismiss it as a dream or acid trip and call me a wacked-out delusional liar.  But all I can tell you is it IS true.  I lived it.  If I hadn’t experienced it myself, I’m certain I would not believe it either.

Just a few miles east of Boise, Idaho off the I-84 interstate you will find a beautiful oasis of public restroomery.  I’m not even sure where to start.  You walk into a building, a clean building with benches, gleaming benches free of grafitti, gum and other sticky substances of unknown origin.  To the left and the right are doors.  Many doors.  Each leads to a sanctuary, your own private sanctuary where you can find the ultimate relief unhampered and untainted by fears of contact with foreign bodily fluids and invisible communicable diseases. 

Floor to ceiling there is beautiful tile in natural stone hues.  The floors are dry and free of any questionable debris.  The toilet paper and toilet seat cover dispensers—fully stocked.  Toilet flushing mechanism, sink faucet and hand dryer are all automated.  The hand soap actually smells good.  The hand dryer actually dries your hands.  We always venture into the reststops as a group, my girls and I—safety in numbers, you know.  So we were sharing this spacious handicap/family bathroom, and while BigHugs was taking her turn, DynaGirl was drying her hands.  The hand dryer is mounted a good 7-8 feet away from the toilet on the opposite wall, yet while DynaGirl was drying her hands, BigHugs hair was flying in the warm breeze, the toilet paper fluttering on its roll.  And this warm breeze not only dried DynaGirl’s hands like that—like that!—but also circulated the most delightful aroma.  It was like cinnamon bears or hot apple cider.

We hesitated to leave that place.  We lingered at the door for just a moment wishing they could all be like this.  A tear of joy welled up at the bottom of my eye as I tried to commit every detail to memory.  Imagine it—a public restroom nicer than your own bathroom at home!  I know, I know.  But it’s true.  I swear it’s true.

When we got back to the car, we told Chuck and Mr. T to prepare themselves for a very special experience.  We waited.

Goose:  I’m going to tell Mr. T the toilet flushed 3 times while DynaGirl was on it.

DynaGirl:  No you’re not!  It happened to me, Goose.  I’m telling him!

Goose:  It doesn’t matter.

Chuck and Mr. T returned to the car.

Mr. T:  Those bathrooms rock!

Chuck:  Those were nice.

Mr. T:  Dad took pictures.

Me:  Were yours tiled?

Chuck:  Yeah, they were all tiled…and cinnamony.

And then, as if order must be restored to our universe, when we tried to leave, our car wouldn’t start.  The battery was dead.  We had to sit around for ten minutes, waiting for someone to come to the rest stop.  At one point Chuck said, “Man, for crying out loud, doesn’t anybody need to use the bathroom?!”  Finally, a lovely party of elderly travellers pulled up beside us.  Chuck asked for their assistance and they happily agreed.  They only asked if they could please use the bathroom first.  We eventually got on our way, but the minor inconvenience was well worth it.  I would trade a working vehicle for a public restroom like that any day. 






Other public restroom adventures.

DynaGirl, getting out of the car:  Do I look presentable?

Me:  For the Burger King bathroom?  Yeah.


Sharing a stall.

Goose, taking her turn:  Shield your eyes!

BigHugs, covering her eyes:  Sheel yo eyes!  And then peeking, Ew…a butt!


Coming back to the car.

Chuck:  Did you have fun?

Goose:  Going to the bathroom?


18 Responses to “Some dreams really do come true”

  1. Julie April 8, 2009 at 10:37 am #

    “Ew, a butt!” That made my day…and it totally reminded me of Finding Nemo: “Look at me; I’m touching the butt!”

    I’m having a hard time comprehending the oasis that was your public restroom…wish you could write a letter.

  2. cheryl April 8, 2009 at 10:40 am #

    Aw, man! Julie beat me to it. The “butt” remark was a LOL one!

    I’m so happy you found a public restroom worthy of usage! Hooray! And even better –I’m impressed (majorly) that Chuck would think to take pictures of such an oasis. Way to go, Chuck!

  3. tawnya April 8, 2009 at 10:42 am #

    Hm. Definitely filed away for future, uh, use…

  4. Kamilli Vanilli April 8, 2009 at 11:14 am #

    I think I know exactly what public restroom you speak of. It is a diamond in the rough, that is for sure.

    I love that Chuck took pictures. Gotta keep these things for posterity you know….

  5. shazza April 8, 2009 at 12:54 pm #

    I’m pretty sure I’ve peed in that potty…

  6. Patience April 8, 2009 at 1:39 pm #

    Very nice bathroom. The staff bathrooms at my hospital aren’t that nice.

  7. madhousewife April 8, 2009 at 3:24 pm #


  8. boquinha April 8, 2009 at 6:02 pm #

    And Chuck took pictures. That rocks.

  9. merkin4 April 9, 2009 at 7:24 am #

    My brother works for the Idaho Department of Transportation. Folks get contracts to keep the restrooms nice and clean. There’s a rest area out on the Idaho-Utah border, south of Malad, where they actually provide a house on-site so somebody can live there and do regular servicing of the rest area. They are also subject to random “audits” of the facilities – could be 1 PM on a Thursday, could be 4 AM on a Sunday, and if the place is nasty, somebody else gets a nice contract from the State.

    Now, the Utah rest area by Brigham City is just scary. I have seen foot-tapping and a wide stance. Specific requests are written with markers. All is not well in Zion.

    That being said, ain’t nobody got a thing on the rest areas in Iowa. They are clean, have working HVAC, *and* have free WiFi.

  10. flip flop mama April 9, 2009 at 9:10 am #

    Wow….unbelievable. That place sounds purely magical. DH always laughs at me when I refuse to stop to go potty at a gas station and must go to a restaurant bathroom. We have to have standards, you know? I might even take a trip out of my way to visit the lovely Idaho rest stops. I’m so glad Chuck too pictures.

  11. bythelbs April 9, 2009 at 9:34 am #

    Julie—Write a letter to whom?

    Cheryl—Yes, thank heavens for Chuck’s cell phone camera!

    Tawnya—I hope you get the chance someday.

    Kamilli—You’ve had the pleasure? And didn’t tell me about it?

    Shazza—Why are you all keeping the awesome public restroom secrets to yourselves?

    Patience—A dirty bathroom in a hospital. That’s a crime.

    Mad—I know, right?

    Boquinha—Chuck does rock.

    merkin4—On principle, I’m against big government, but I think we need some legislation to make this contract thing a requirement in all 50 states. Desperate times call for desperate measures. I wonder if I can come up with an excuse to travel to Ohio.

    Flip—Magical, yes. That’s exactly what it was. I will only consent to using a gas station bathroom if it is inside of a not-too-scary looking convenience store. If it’s one of those on the outside of the building where you need the key attached to the 2×4 to get it, forget it.

  12. boquinha April 9, 2009 at 9:53 am #

    Oooh, yes if it needs one of those keys, run away!

    An excuse to visit OH? It’s next to PA . . . Chocolate World, anyone?

  13. tawnya April 9, 2009 at 12:34 pm #

    I will think of you on our journey to Portland / Seattle later this summer. We’ll make sure to stop. Just for you! (oh, wait…we’re stopping at friends in Boise. We may not need to stop!)

  14. Alison Wonderland April 9, 2009 at 6:14 pm #

    Did you chat with the nice older coupl3 about the fantasticness of the restrooms? I would think that would have been the primary topic of conversation with them as well.

  15. foofer April 10, 2009 at 10:41 am #

    Ohio? Do you need to drive through Iowa on your way there?

  16. bythelbs April 10, 2009 at 10:43 am #

    Oops, sorry, I guess I meant Iowa. They both have 4 letters and an I and an O.

  17. Susan M April 12, 2009 at 6:57 am #

    There was a Target or a Walmart I used to go to that had nice clean bathrooms and they used some sort of urinal-cake thing in the toilets that smelled like bubble gum. Somehow it bothered me to walk into a bathroom and think, “It smells so good in here! Yummy!”


  1. Tales from the road « By the lbs - July 12, 2010

    […] We’re coming up on the cinnamon bathroom.  Should we […]

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