My Traveling Clothes

…or “How Pissed Off Am I?”

We’re on a buss or we’re on a plane, it keeps changing. Me, my husband, and my son. We can see trees and houses at about street level, but we’re flying. Or maybe the bus is on those tank treads. It’s first packed pretty tight, but slowly expands to be quite comfortable. We can move our seats and people are gathering in little travel groups, sometimes with people they know but other times with new people just to meet someone.

Everyone is very well-dressed. It is the fashion of the times to dress up for travel. In airports, train stations, and bus stops everywhere there are well-dressed people. Once you get on your conveyance, there are “travel clothes” available for rent. They’re just very comfortable clothes that no one would ever wear seriously. I get a breezy dress, like something you’d wear to the beach or see in a vacation ad. I remember that the shirt part was black and very light weight, but I can’t remember the top. My husband didn’t rent any travel clothes, he thinks it’s too extravagant.

Our little travel cluster includes three other women who were drawn in to our small son. They take turns holding him and bouncing him on their knees and he loves it. When it’s time for the plane (it’s a plane now, pretty sure…) to take off, we all strap in and we have a travel car seat for my son.

I fell asleep for a while on the plane and now I’m cramped so I get up to walk around. Even in our travel clusters, there is a wide hallway (no walls) down the middle for walking forward and aft. In the aft section are some shops (including where you rent your travel clothes). I’m looking for the restroom, but I only find a men’s and a changing station. Where’s the women’s?

I return to my seat and explain to my husband that I can’t find the women’s restroom, so he gets up to look for it. After a while he comes back and points it out to me, it’s separate from everywhere else, off the main hallway to the right.

I go through the frosted glass door with a large “W” etched on it to see a small phone-booth sized room and another frosted glass door. I think of them as the outer door (the first one) and the inner door. Once through I see there’s a lock on the door, but also that there are two toilets with no dividing walls. I’m not sure whether I should lock the door or not since I’ll only use one toilet. I decide to keep it unlocked – what if a pregnant woman needs to get in here right away?

I’m nearly done when I hear the outer door open. I get ready to explain why the door’s unlocked. The inner door opens and I can’t see the face of the person there – they’re taller than the door! But I can tell it’s a man. He pauses, I think he can see my feet. I explain why I left the door unlocked, thinking it’s odd that he’s here but I don’t call him out on it. He shrugs and comes inside, it doesn’t bother him to pee next to a woman on a toilet. He has a friend behind him who also get’s ready to use the toilet I’m on, waiting with his pants undone.

I finish up but before I can leave a third man enters. He turns to face the door and starts peeing on it. I try to get his attention so he’ll move aside and let me through, but he turns toward me and splashes me! I start shouting at him and get really close to hitting him before he sheepishly shows me the water bottle he was using to squirt the wall. Somehow he thinks this makes it OK, but I grab the bottle and begin beating him with it.

He’s shouting, “What the hell is wrong with you?” while trying to explain that it’s a joke.

I shout back at him, “What the hell is wrong with you! You wanted to piss someone off, well you pissed someone off!” I hit him with the water bottle some more until he runs away.

Back at our travel cluster I tell them the story, to explain why I’ve come back from the bathroom (1) wet and (2) after such a long time. They all think it’s very funny.


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