In the following article, I will discuss in depth my first experience using a squatting toilet. And how you can overcome your fear of falling backwards into a pile of $@#%.
“the feeling of disorientation experienced by someone who is suddenly subjected to an unfamiliar culture, way of life, or set of attitudes”
Source: The internet
I hadn’t really felt a sense of culture shock until I had to face the squat toilet. When you’ve lived your whole life doing something a certain way, it’s hard to imagine doing it any other way. Going to the toilet is definitely one thing you never thought you would have to learn... again. Pooping in a potty was the first thing in my life that called for a round of applause from my parents, followed by walking (yes, in that order). Honestly, once in awhile, I still get a sense of accomplishment that I’m able to not poop in my pants.
In most parts of Asia, they don’t have regular sitting toilets, a place where you can sit, relax and do your business while reading a magazine, doing a crossword, or even replying or sending a text from your phone (do not pretend like you’ve never done it, hell I’ve even talked on the phone -sorry Pat). Here they have squat toilets. A basic hole in the ground with no way to go through the motions: sit, relax, do yo biz. Spending 3 straight months in SE Asia has forced me to master this not-so-unique toileting technique.
Now the first time is THE worst! Remember, I’m a guy that never had to squat to do anything let alone go to the bathroom. Here, it’s a different ball game. Heck, it’s even safe to say that it’s a different sport. In the next few paragraphs you will get to live vicariously through me, as I go step by step through my first squatting experience. (Feel free to take notes.)
Alright let’s squat right into it.
I had to take off my pants since I didn’t trust myself to not poop on them. Then I had to crouch into a position so I wouldn’t fall backwards naked where everyone else before me did their business. It’s a lot harder than it sounds, even if sounds hard to begin with! But relax, you will find a position you’ll be able to hold for more than 10sec just as I did.
The hard part here is getting into the right mindset. You have to get into this Zen-like focus because even though you want to push, your butt is like “dude no... NO!”
You are going sit down, we’ve been rehearsing this since we were 3. “I’m not letting anything out till you do!” Then you reply “namaste……” *plop* It will feel weird and wrong but that’s cool, you get over it.
Just when I thought the struggle was over, I realized that I have my pants in one hand, toilet paper roll in the other and I have to wipe my butt (cue Mission Impossible music).
It was especially tricky since anything I dropped in that place, I didn’t care what it was, I was leaving there! Pants included. So I was basically juggling my whole life in a stall just to wipe my butt and to put my pants back on without anything touching the ground. It’s like the high stakes version of playing “The floor is lava.” After a set of acrobatics, I managed to walk out of the stall with my pants on and most of my dignity intact.
The whole thing was a crazy experience and a hell of a shock, but after a few weeks, I managed to master the art of popping a squat. If you want a more educated take on how to use asian bathrooms check ou this article.
Hope you enjoyed this beginner’s guide to using a squat toilet! If you did please share to a friend that is afraid of squatters so they can overcome their fears.
Already used a squat toilet? Tell us about your first experience. Leave a comment bellow!
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