Let’s talk toilets. No, I haven’t had a s***ty day, per say, but today was one of those days. I have remind myself to laugh at whatever blonde moment I have or else live in constant fear of realizing that I am a total klutz.
Japan’s High-Tech Toilets
In Japan, the toilets are ‘high tech’. How can you make a toilet high-tech, you ask? Well, they have all sorts of futuristic buttons, and the seats are heated. If you are like me, and are used to the freezing-cold porcelin john the first thing in the morning, the wonderful butt-warmer is a nice change from the shock of the morning flush.
Side note: I am not sure why the Japanese have invested in futuristic toilets, and yet don’t see the value in central heating, but to each their own….anyways.
These toilets have male and female bidets, warmers, coolers, fake ‘flushing sounds’ in case you are self-conscious about your business, faucets to rinse, scent-fresheners, automated flushers, night-lights, and strobe lights. Haha, okay not the strobes, but they seriously contain about 50 million confusing buttons. You can see where I am heading with this, but bear with me.
Yes, there is a museum dedicated to toilets. If you aren’t squirmish (like me), feel free to sip on the free tea they offer while you peruse the porcelain and look at other sewage-related exhibits. Tokyo really does have a flavor of entertainment for everyone!
Back to toilet talk:
A very tired Cassy was using the restroom in one of Tokyo’s bazillion malls (where I work). I apparently couldn’t see the motion-detector flush signal on the wall, and pressed the end-button on the toilet’s remote control. I am happy to admit that I was standing to the side of the toilet when I did this, rather than directly in front, as it makes the story slightly less embarrassing. Rather than flushing the toilet like I had intended to, I activated the bidet…..which had enough pressure to spray water over the door and onto the floor in front of the stall.
Because of my lack of knowledge about bidets, I didn’t realize that you must press a button to turn it off. So, here I am, panicking in a bathroom stall, while a steady arch of water is soaking the floor outside. After finally turning the bloody thing off, I stood there awkwardly, not knowing what to do. Do I come out? Do I not? Did someone see? Not only do Japanese bathrooms lack paper towels to dry hands with, but I probably would have had to use a full roll of toilet paper to clean up the water mess.
I mustered the courage to crack the door, and bolt, hoping no one saw the mess I created on the floor, and ran back to the classroom. Too embarrassed to admit my mistake, I spoke about this to no one, and avoided that hallway for the remainder of the day.
This wasn’t my first time being embarrassed in a foreign country, and I know it probably won’t be my last. What kind of situations have you accidentally got yourself into?