Ewan Mcgregor Said it Best

Choose life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family, Choose a fucking big television, Choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players, and electrical tin openers.

…Choose good health, low cholesterol and dental insurance. Choose fixed-interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends.

…Choose leisure wear and matching luggage. Choose a three piece suit on hire purchase in a range of fucking fabrics. Choose D.I.Y and wondering who you are on a Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing sprit-crushing game shows, stuffing fucking junk food into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pishing you last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish, fucked-up brats you have spawned to replace yourself. Choose your future. Choose life.

I chose not to choose life: I chose something else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who need reasons when you’ve got heroin?

I don’t know much about heroin, but if I could choose to take another great sequence from one of the best movies of all-time, I would…

I fantasize about a massive, pristine convenience. Brilliant gold taps, virginal white marble, a seat carved from ebony, a cistern full of chanel number five, and a flunky handing me pieces of raw silk toilet roll. But under the circumstances I’ll settle for anywhere……………….

Yeah, I just found it.

So that local fare idea was the worst decision possible. I needed to break the monotony of a train ride so I hopped off of the train in Bratislava, Slovakia for a quick little side trip and a street vendor deal. I had about two hours to kill before the next train came through going to Budapest, so I figured I would just drop off my bags at Bratislava’a brilliant “Left Luggage” service. The man working the office stated that I would need to pay 1.50 euro for one bag (more than 15 kg) and 1 euro (less than 15 kg). for the other bag for up to one day. I told him that I was just going to grab a bite to eat and then continue on to Budapest, Hungary — and asked for a deal. He was a very nice older gentleman and said, “I’m older and my eyes aren’t as good as before, I think I see only one bag if you connect strap to other bag. You then have very nice orange and black bag.” That was awesome (saving me a Euro in the process). He then said, “and if you are back in under two hours, and can help me with luggage into storage,  I’ll charge only Euro.” Now normally I wouldn’t trust this kind of negotiation and I did think twice about it. However, he was old, like really old. He wasn’t going to take my stuff. He couldn’t have — it would’ve maimed him. If it was a young person, I wouldn’t have done it.

Fortunately I had a couple of Euros lying around from vacations of yesteryear — so I didn’t have to exchange money. It was a great plan, stop, rest for a bit, see another city really quick, have a meal, and back on the train. Naturally, this went awry.

Every single thing I’ve read says that street vendors have the best meals in Bratislava.

Well not the fucking thing I just ate. Actually, I take that back — it was delicious, and incredibly cheap, so much so that I went back for seconds. Two plates of deliciousness, 3 Euro. I still had enough to get back my luggage. Then the “uh-oh, something’s brewing and it ain’t coffee” moment (a phrase coined by my former roommate James Dominguez) happened… the kapustnicka and dumplings made my anus go kaputt-ist. It made a beeline straight to my colon and it wasn’t stopping for shit. You know that moment when you can actually feel your food just pool in various caverns of your body and push right on through? Well that just happened. Within 30 minutes of eating that amazing delicacy… I was darting and sharting into the closest available toilet in Bratislava.

Problem.

In Bratislava people charge for water closet usage. AKA — you pay to shit/piss. I had a single Euro remaining and needed to get my luggage back. Now I’m not cheap at all — I just don’t like paying unnecessary fees and wasting time changing money. Especially for a Euro when I already had my plan set forth. Seeing as though every guy knows exactly how long it will take for colon blow to commence, I knew I had five minutes in the best of scenarios. I banked on three-and-a-half. Fortunately I wasn’t wearing a watch so I was in Matrix time, if you will.

And  I was back near the train station, but had absolutely no chance of getting there to drop a deuce. So I ducked into three separate public toilets, all very clean and pristine — but all pay to play ventures. I asked a restaurant worker if I could use hers. No dice. I was shit outta luck really soon, so I was either going to have to pull a Mexican in the mall and hope I don’t get called out and fined or get creative. And MacGyver’d it, I did. I saw a back room of a mechanic’s shop left open. It was the best option available, slightly above shitting myself in the middle of the street. Well beggars can’t be choosers so I just ducked in undetected. Shut the door quietly. Locked it. Then turned on the light.

Seriously, why is it that whenever you have the worst case of bubbleguts known to man, you always are stuck with the worst facilities ever? It was like the bathroom from Saw. Only without any severed feet and more trash and shit on the floor. Fortunately there was a space next to the sink that was actually clean. That was nice of them. I then ventured towards the stall.

No lid, no seat, no top part of the bowl because it had broken off. Flies. Stench. It was awful. The water level was about a 1/4 of an inch from overflowing (and didn’t take into account any displacement properties). I had to negotiate a dicey shit-flush for fear of messing my pants up. I was successful. I commenced flushing and then mid-stream just squatted and popped right off. No spillage. Flushing actually did occur but “new” water just splashed right out onto the floor because there was no mechanism in the top part to stop it from saying “I’m full” and leveling off. It was brutal. I probably would’ve gagged but I was practicing for the holding-my-breath-underwater test.

Slovakia. Seriously. WTF?

No usable toilet paper (of course) since everything was shit-drenched, but I had butt wipes in my pocket. Epic save. I cleaned the balloon-knot and threw the shit stained remnants in the garbage. I didn’t even feel bad about it. It just seemed like it added character. It reminded me of the time I went to the Dark Horse Tavern in Philadelphia. I needed to use the restroom to wash my hands because I had just been on South Street and just felt dirty. So I go in, wash my hands and then turn to the door to leave, and see that some drunk idiot thought it’d be a hilarious idea (I’m guessing) to put his shitty toilet paper in the middle of the door on the inside for all to see. I referred to it as a holy shitball when I spoke to the bartender about it, because I do word associations… and the only way to describe it was “like a spitball, just with shit.” So shitball stuck. Just like the shitty toilet tissue. Right on the door.

Apparently, according to the bartender, “it happens all of time.”

It was like somebody just cleaned a dirty diaper — and rather than dispose of the soiled bits properly… they consciously decided to high-5 the door with the diarrhea as adhesive. Brought back memories, it did.

I look forward to never returning to that place. Or a bathroom in Slovakia.

I then disinfected my hands/arms with another clean butt wipe (just in case) and was out the door. Undetected again. No more local fare from third-world countries. Fortunately, old man at the train station was true to his word. I retrieved my bags, under two hours, and it cost me a single Euro. Boom.

Next stop, the Hungarian border.

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