Porcelain Woes

By Alison Searle

Coming from a person who took frigid showers her first two weeks in Xela, let me pass on the wise (if not tardy) advice I was given.

Though you’ve surely noticed the tangled web of wires protruding from your showerhead (and consequently wondered how many more days you can avoid electrocution), you may have yet to discover the magic of hot water. Some showers have a switch that prompts luxurious – if not low pressured and slightly tepid flows of water – but some lack the switch begging the question: how do I stay under long enough to avoid frost bite and actually get clean?

First, try turning the knob only slightly, seemingly to the cold water position to attain the hot water you so desperately covet. This knob switch is clearly the work of genius Guatemalan engineers, who decided it was much more practical to employ minimal knob turning for the obviously sought after hot water.

If neither the switch nor the slight turn works, consider yourself S.O.L. and pencil in a long, hot shower upon your return home.

Unfortunately, the shower isn’t the only bathroom appliance in need of mastering. In addition to breaking the 18+ year habit of flushing your toilet paper, there are worse trials that may arise in the early days of traveling.

As it is virtually inevitable that your gastronomic happenings will change with a new environment, a trustworthy toilet becomes a luxury most would be hard up to concede. The problem, however, is the feared failure to flush “post-bathroom Armageddon;” which can create a state of panic.

Take a deep breath.

First, check to see if the chain has come off, an easy fix that Dad should have taught you as part of your segue into adulthood. If all is well there, make quick friends with a bucket. The tank often times doesn’t have enough water in it, so add some and flush your troubles away.

Whoever said, “It’s the little things in life,” would certainly agree these are valuable life tools.

This all of course leads us to only one suitable conclusion: now that you’re highly experienced in bathroom management, get yourself a plunger, a low rise pair of pants and give the local plumber a run for his money.

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