I know, I know, the questions you've been dying to ask: but Sarah, what are the bathrooms like in Afghanistan?
Well, we've talked a little about the showers. They're not great, but I've learned to love them. And I've posted an image of the "hard dumpers"- large metal shipping containers that have been turned into semi- permanent bathrooms. Those are rickety and breezy, there are only a few in each camp and they are decidedly unluxurious, but they're far better than the more common port-o-johns, which are everywhere. Really, in most locations, this is the bathroom you're stuck with: a portapotty that gets used by everyone and their brother. At one of my work locations, the only toilets available to us all day
long are port-o-johns and best of all, they're used by easily about 100
people during the work day alone.
It's abhorrent, people.
No matter how good one gets at making a paper nest and squatting, this terrible for females- especially this female. I drink coffee and water all day long; there are many trips. Hateful, awful, time- consuming trips.
Enter the P-Mate.
What is that, right? Here, have a close- up of the packaging.
Why yes- yes, it is exactly what you're thinking it is. But… how do you use it, you ask?
Bless those Brits for coming up with the idea. It's taken me months to get brave enough to purchase a box from the PX- the mortifying feminine hygiene packaging was enough to put me off of the idea, but worse yet was the idea of buying this from a male, conservative, Afghan clerk. I shouldn't have worried; they didn't look at it twice.
Yeah, I'm going to try it out. Anything is better, right?