Once when I was 14 years old, I traveled via Greyhound bus all the way from Texarkana to Victoria, Texas to see my best friend who had moved south the year before. As the crow flies, it might take all of about 6 hours. As the Greyhound bus drives, (and anyone who has ever had the distinct pleasure of being a passenger on a Greyhound bus will feel my pain here) it takes…oh…about 14 hours. We left at 6am and didn’t arrive at our final destination until around 8pm.

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I was fourteen, I loved to drink diet cokes. I think I packed somewhere in the neighborhood of about 20 in my bag to take on the trip. I ditched taking socks so I could have room for my beloved DC…you can see I had a fear of running out, so I made sure I packed enough for both ways.

After consuming my alloted 10 drinks in 12 hours, I was really ready to find a bathroom. That in itself is not that remarkable…I know that. But do you know that out of the 142 stops we made that day, only about 14 had public restrooms? And out of the 14 public restrooms, only about 5 had even been cleaned within the last century? And out of those 5, do you know how many times I waited in line to have the opportunity to use one? Five. How many times was the bus pulling out before I had the chance to actually go? Yep, you guessed it. Five.I would have gone on the side of the road if the bus would have stopped…but it was not to be. I had to hold my bladder until I arrived at my destination.

Every bump in the road was excruciating…my teeth literally felt like they were floating.

When my best friend and her mom picked me up I inquired how far they lived from the bus station. That was the longest thirty minutes of my life, but I was determined to make it. Have you ever witnessed a 5 year old boy who had to go to the bathroom when riding in a car? Ever notice the little hopping-head bopping thing they do? It’s not attractive on a 14 year old girl, let me assure you.

When we finally arrived, I tore out of that car like cat who’s been caged up without food too long. All I could think about was finding the bathroom. Down the hall, left turn and two doors down on the left. Check.

Never had my 14 year old self known such relief until my rear end docked itself on that toilet seat. About 10 seconds into it, I began to feel dizzy and my behind started to burn. I thought to myself, “Self, something’s not right.” It was then that I parted my legs to look down and saw the mushroom cloud coming from all around the toilet.

Their housekeeper had poured almost a whole gallon of bleach into the toilet in order to disinfect it. That, combined with the ammonia in my urine…well, you can just imagine the outcome. The biggest housewife’s bomb you’ve ever seen in your life. I’m quite sure that if you had walked into the bathroom at that moment, you might have thought that America was under nuclear attack, because you really couldn’t see much more than my arms waving wildly in surrender…looking for a way out of this gaseous h-e-double-hockesticks.

I’ll leave the rest to your imagination…to post it would be most uncouth. Suffice it to say that I was unable to sit the rest of the entire time I was visiting that week because of 2nd degree chemical burns on my patootie.
Gives new meaning to the phrase, “know what really burns my butt?”…doesn’t it?

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6 Comments on Busses and Bathrooms

  1. Welcome to the Zoo!
    February 27, 2007 at 9:35 pm (16 years ago)

    Karen that is just to funny, I am sure not to you at the time but you made me laugh. LOL!! And the way you tell it is great~

    I miss our little ebay group and chatting about funny things like this!!

  2. Rachel Whetzel
    February 28, 2007 at 2:39 am (16 years ago)

    Oh my GOODNESS, Karen! You could have died! That combination can really kill you!


  3. Kim
    February 28, 2007 at 9:22 am (16 years ago)

    Ha! This was so funny! I’m still laughing!

    You have a great writing style!


  4. Linda
    February 28, 2007 at 2:42 pm (16 years ago)

    Oh man, as another human being, I can laugh with you, but as a mom, your pain just about kills me. I can’t imagine that happening to my 14 year-old girl. Glad you made it through. And thanks for stopping by my blog. I’m sure enjoying yours!

  5. Amy Jane
    February 28, 2007 at 5:21 pm (16 years ago)


    Great story to have, but you sure earned it, didn’t you!!!

  6. Phyllis@Aimless Conversation
    June 28, 2008 at 10:34 am (15 years ago)

    OMG! That’s crazy.

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