When I was in India, a roadtrip involved stops at stores on the side of the highway with outdoor bathrooms: concrete stalls with a concrete floor with a drain in the middle, and a faucet (like the one you hook your hose up to on the side of your house) in one wall. Toilet paper is strictly bring-your-own (and only bother if you’re a silly Westerner). That’s really all you need.
Life in Benny is not quite so . . . um, exotic. Benny has a bathroom with a flushing toilet and a sink with running water. We can stop and use it any time. The catch is that when our black water tank nears full, we have to find a dump station and we pay to empty it. So in the interest of budgeting, we try to use public facilities as available and save our toilet for when we have no other options (and for one year old Annabelle who uses a potty seat on Benny’s toilet, and is not inspired in public restrooms).
We grocery shop almost every day, so that’s a good place to use a bathroom. If we stay overnight in a campground, there are usually public restrooms. And of course the Walmart overnight comes with a bathroom, too.
Hardest place to find a toilet? New York City, where we didn’t have Benny with us so couldn’t exercise that option at all. “There’s a playground,” I naively piped up. “There’s always a bathroom near a playground!” Not in NYC. And shops don’t let you use theirs, either. Suddenly we understood why George Costanza got rich by designing an app to find the nearest toilet. Where do you find a toilet in New York City. At the Port Authority where you catch the Staten Island Ferry.
If you ever need to find a dump station, however, there are apps for that, and a couple of helpful websites: