The bathrooms of Israel, Part I | Do Try This at Home: The bathrooms of Israel, Part I

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

The bathrooms of Israel, Part I

I'm back & ready to show off all my vacation pictures! Okay, not ALL of them (I took 300, more or less), but at least a few of the bathrooms.

We stayed our first couple nights in a very nice hotel in Jerusalem. It was such a nice hotel that I felt bad about the fact that I couldn't seem to keep the shower water inside the shower.

Three nights later when we stayed at the Deganya Bet kibbutz, I realized why I was having such a hard time: in Israel it's apparently not that big a deal to get water all over the bathroom floor.

Here's the bathroom in Deganya Bet. See how the glass wall doesn't go all the way to the floor?That stick thing is a giant squeegee so that you can wipe as much of the water down the drain as possible. That way when you slip and fall and bust your head open on the wet tile, you don't drown in the process.

I'll say one thing for this method - it must really encourage people to keep the very bottom of the toilet clean. You know that little part that meets the floor and gets all gross and slimy if you don't clean it religiously? Israelis probably don't turn their backs on that part of the toilet even for a SECOND! 'Cause who'd want to have their feet swimming around in the same water as that mess?!?!?!

Just, y'know, to get a head start on the vacation photos, here's one of me & the kids standing on top of a mosque which was built over Samuel's grave. Our tour guide, Jeff (who I'll introduce later), sounded slightly skeptical that ole' Samuel was really under there. But, y'know what? The guy had to be buried SOMEWHERE around there. Why not under the mosque?

25 comments:

Urban Thought said...

You're killing me with the 'bust your head open' thing.

I know a few people from Israel. I must say that their toilets are always clean around the area mentioned.

Looks like you had a good time.

SJ said...

Half the blogging world is going to Israel or what?

Did you eat anything you hadn't tried before? Did see the rockets lobbed back and forth by Israel and the friendly neighborhood? I heard now Jerusalem has it's own gay pride parade did you see that? Did you... what's the use all you can think about blogging after a trip is bathroom cultural diversity.

Ingrid said...

They probably don't even have those stupid little "knob" things on the base of the toilet that are so freaking hard to clean.

I wonder if anyone has ever tried to steal the squeegie. Kind of like I do with the white fluffly hotel bath towels.




No, I don't really. But I think about it.

Sarah C. said...

Cool post! I always find it interesting the little differences in things (even bathrooms) around the world. Definitely hoping they keep that area around the toilet super clean.

Great photo of you & your kids!! :)

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

UT - Thanks, we had a great time! And I'm always pleased about clean toilets of course!

SJ - Can you believe People & I missed each other by like ONE DAY?!?! On the food - we actually get pretty good Israeli food in Houston. We hadn't tried laffa before, so that was new for us. I was surprised by how much Italian food there was in Israel. You just can't get away from that stuff!

Ingrid - I could just see us in customs! Yes, I bought a prayer shawl, some jewelry, a couple toys...and oh yeah! I also stole this giant squeegee...

Thanks Sarah C! I was sort of surprised actually - I don't usually come out that well in posed pictures.

Jennie said...

When we went to England in 2001, I took pictures of some of the public loos there. They even had some framed "loo of the year awards" hanging up in one of them which I thought was pretty unique :)

KarenSue said...

I enjoyed your post! and the picture.

You know, I occassionally take pics of bathrooms also.

hmmmmmm...

People in the Sun said...

When I lived in England, an Israeli friend who knew I was going to visit my parents asked me to bring him one thing: the squeegee thingy. It was really hard to get used to anything else. But as long as people can afford Swifter Wet, I suppose.

You know you have to wear shoes in a bathroom like that, right? When people in Israel go to public showers they wear a weird kind of flip flop called Jellyfish Shoes. Honey won't let me wear them here. I understand that. I wouldn't want to be seen with croc-wearers.

With the heat there, were you the only ones smiling? It is a great picture, though. Your kids seem really happy.

ALF said...

Sounds like such a fun trip!

I never clean that part of the toilet because it doesn't seem that likely that someone would get down there close enough to inspect it...unless they were puking. And when you're puking you're so close to the toilet in general that it's just disgusting.

lotus07 said...

That pretty much cancels any plans of me visiting the Holy Land. No wall around the shower? How barbaric!!!!

Heather said...

I love this bathroom! It would be so easy to clean! You could just hose down everything and then rinse it down the drain. Genius!

Kristine said...

I shudder to think what the base of our toilet would release if our shower was situated like that.

EEEEEEEEEEEWWWWWWWWW!!!

Glad to see that one's clean though.

Judy said...

Now there's an idea: custom car trip of Israel by toilet...why didn't I think of that!

Ample Goddess Jewelry said...

How cool to be able to go to such a place.

Beth said...

More pictures please! you all look "hot"! LOL

Ms. Q said...

yay! Since I stopped traveling for work, I'm suffering from Airport Restroom Withdrawal!

I was in Cinque Terre, Italy in 1999. The shower there was not so modern and nice as the one you show but the water-every-whichway thing kinda threw me off. Thank goodness they had an actual toilet and not the squat things. I did take photos but that was pre-digital.

but yea, the shower was just this shower head with a built-in water heater (dribble-dribble-HOT-oww--Ccool-eeee-HOT)

and the floor ended up being a big mess. No squeegee.

Derek Wong said...

I was wondering when you'd next have some nice toilets for us to see! Actually I'm traveling right now, and when I saw some toilets around your posts highlighting the ones that you've seen in your travels did come to mind.

Carey said...

Wet tile will bust your head open, I can't tell you how many times I have fallen! Ugh, it hurts!

I hope you have some more toilet stories to share -- I love it!

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Jennie - How neat! I'm obviously in favor of bathroom awards, since I give them out myself...

Thanks Karensue!

People - You know, I wore my flip flops in the shower just 'cuz. But it didn't occur to me to encourage my kids to do the same. Oh well. I was half convinced we were going to come back with lice or scabies from the airplane blankets and so far so good on that. Now if they don't end up with athlete's foot or something...

I dunno - the tour guide was actually happy as a clam tromping around in the heat. He lasted way better than I did, but I guess he's more used to it since Houston's so flat.

Alf - I hate to have that part of the toilet dirty! And I LOVE my apartment, but it's like a kajillion years old & everything's resurfaced. So you can clean and clean all you want & that part of the toilet just never seems clean.

Lotus - Sorry to be the bearer of bad news!

Heather - Yeah, that squeegee thing was pretty neat!

Kristine - Yes! I was lucky that way!

Judy - I always travel by toilet! KIDDING! Well, sort of kidding. I do sort of like to scope out the bathrooms wherever I am.

Ample GJ - We were so lucky to be able to go!

Beth - Will do!!!!!!!!!!!

Ms.Q - OUCH! That does NOT sound pleasant at all!

Derek - Hope you're having a good trip! And that you get some bathroom pics!

Thanks Carey! I do have a couple more where that came from! :-)

Kerry McKibbins said...

This was the best..."That way when you slip and fall and bust your head open on the wet tile, you don't drown in the process."
My husband asked me what I was laughing so loudly at, lol!
Hey, are you a soccer fan? I work with a guy who is a big Israeli soccer hero.

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Thanks Kerry!!!! And no, I generally have a hard time drumming up any enthusiasm for sports, though my son says he wants to take soccer next year, so I guess I'll have to give it another try! His soccer coach would definitely know of the guy though!

Disa said...

where are the hole in the ground loos? those are my favourite.

Maureen said...

Squeegee....

Sorry, I just love that word.

Looks dangerous to me; I am sure hubby would find a way to bust his head open in one of those bathrooms...

People in the Sun said...

Kerry? Still there? Who's the hero?

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Disa - Do you mean the hole in the ground ones that Saradevil posted from Korea? Ms.Q posted one too from Singapore

Maureen - It is a good word, isn't it? I'm actually sort of surprised all our brains are still in our respective heads. They are slippery!

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