Saturday, December 13, 2008

Where's the Bathroom?

Today I was replenishing the bathrooms in our house with toilet paper. I had to pause for a moment and say, "Thank you, Lord." Lowly toilet paper. One of things we take for granted, spin around, grab a few squares, do the duty, and flush it away. But I have to think for a minute about all the people that have no toilet paper, or a place to even go to the bathroom.

Last week we attended our Beyond JustFaith meeting, which focuses on our efforts to put into place our efforts for ending poverty. Tom Bole, a real sweetheart in the group, told the story about being down at the Church of the Reconciler. He said that a man came in and Tom asked, "Can I help you!" The man screamed, "I need some toilet paper NOW." Tom said it took a moment to register what he was asking and then Tom scurried around to help the man. As Tom said, "When a man has to go, he HAS to go!" We talked at length about lack of public toilets for the homeless. I know both sides of the argument. Who would clean them? How would you keep people from being harmed by being attacked in the restroom? What about people who would sleep in the bathroom? Are people being enabled to stay 'homeless' if more infrastructure is put into place? I don't know the answer to any of the questions.

I must admit that restrooms are something to which I pay a lot of attention. First of all, there is a huge lack of stalls when there are a lot of women involved. I maintain my staunch position that it has to be because of male architects. Women would never do this to other women. Then there is the problem when you get to the airport with your luggage and you try to squash yourself into a stall with all your belongings. Again, I blame men for this misery. And I must admit that I have taken over a men's restroom by posting a woman at the door to stop any men from coming in when there are a lot of women. Paybacks are heck. And poopies happen.

But, ah, then there is Adtran. They are a lovely client of mine in Huntsville. You walk into the bathroom and there are 12 (count them because I obviously have) stalls. No line. No waiting. And the stalls are large. You could have a party in there. But then again, maybe that is a bad idea. But I digress. I never fail to stop for a minute, look down that long line of doors and say a prayer of thanks that someone had the foresight to build enough stalls. And, I never cease to find the people in charge of the bathrooms and thank them for their incredible work of keeping these stalls sparkling clean.

Thank you, Lord, for bathrooms, toilets and lowly toilet paper.

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