So I just realized I’ve haven’t shared too much about the bathrooms in China. I did mention my first experience with one during our Chinese Medical Exam and if you’ve ever done any reading about visiting or living in China, this is not a new subject. But a blog about China can not be complete without mentioning it, so here’s my tribute.
Affectionately called the “squatty potty” by most Westerners, these little fellows are pretty much porcelain holes in the ground. This is a very “nice” specimen, photo taken at my favorite place in Shenyang, IS Cafe. I say nice because this one is usually clean and sometimes even has paper!
Speaking of paper, there are two things you should never leave home without when you’re in China.
Pocket packs of tissue and wet wipes. No need to pack them from the US (except maybe a couple of packs the first time you visit so you have them before you get to a store.) because you can find them everywhere. You’ll find lots of uses not the least of which is toilet paper when you have to visit the public toilet. Most do NOT have tissue available. Of course, you’ll only forget them once.
The wet wipes are great when there is no soap or towels to wash your hands with afterwards.
Most westerners hate these things and you learn pretty fast where to look for a western toilet if you have to go. For example, this is where McDonald’s is your friend. They almost always have western toilets. The western hotel chains are also a good place to find a “normal” toilet.
I have a little confession to make though.
I really don’t mind them.
Now, I hate it when they’re dirty and smelly, don’t get me wrong. But the actually squat pot, I don’t mind. Personally, I’m not sitting on a public toilet no matter where in the world it is. In that case, I actually think it’s easier to use this kind. Plus, it’s really not that different than going outside when you’re hiking or camping. And if you grow up on a farm, you’ve usually mastered the outdoor squat before you’re even potty trained.
What do you think? If you live in China, do you hate the squatty potty?