15/01/2015 I quite like the caravanning lifestyle. It’s very easy and laidback, with many very enjoyable aspects and some things that are less enjoyable but come as part of the overall package.
One of these less enjoyable aspects is the experience of the shared toilet and shower facilities in caravan parks. I don’t mean open and shared in the Japanese sense, but more so in terms of proximity, and sound and olfactory experiences. In some regards, they might just as well be Japanese-style because it’s very much an inclusive experience.
There is a certain informal partnership that you enter into when making use of these facilities. I tend to adopt the role of silent partner, while others might sometimes choose a less silent role. Since starting our caravan journey, I have regularly found myself next to the Mouth Breather who’s every breath closely imitates a surfacing Humpback Whale with asthma. I learned reasonably early in life how to breathe quietly, and had always assumed that everyone else did so as well until regularly confronted with these sighing, gasping guys who seem like they are one cigarette short of a pine box.
Then there’s the guy at every caravan park who gives birth in the next toilet stall, accompanied by all the associated grunts and groans and seemingly highly enjoyable sighs of satisfaction with every dilation achieved. I am so tempted to offer my congratulations after it’s all ended and ask what sex it is. But Life’s little pleasures are few and far between, I guess, so I just hope in silence that the birth will be quick. After all, it’s probably not his first…
I do, though, struggle to come to terms with those guys who finish off their nice cleansing shower by dousing themselves with clouds of Eau de Cologne or whatever is the pungent equivalent in vogue these days.
Really, guys, just pause for a moment and give thought to what you hope to achieve by all the expense of those off-the-shelf pseudo-pheromones. If you’re trying to mask a persistent body odour problem that you just can’t shake, then just do a better job when showering – simple. Perhaps take a bit longer; spend some extra quality time with those hard to reach spots. There are a lot of inexpensive products available to help in that regard. It’s not such a hard problem to overcome, really.
If, on the other hand, you use that smelly stuff in the hope of impressing someone then, please, consider the many gasping and asthmatic men you are leaving in your wake in the shower block each day as you prep for whatever you hope may come from the day. Like me, they would be ever so grateful for a bit more oxygen with their morning shower. You may also like to give that potential Significant Other Person you’re prepping for the benefit of gauging you by your natural (and hopefully, cleaner) pheromones. If you are no longer rendering them unconscious on contact with the Eau de Pong, you may afford them an opportunity to get to know you.
When I find myself within whiff of a person emitting a fog of pungent smelling perfumery, I wonder, in the few seconds between holding my breath and the onset of anaphylactic shock, what compels someone to apply chemical weapons of mass destruction intended to send anyone they come into contact with into a gagging reflux state?
These people I avoid, because the nose knows.
It’s very enjoyable to have a nice warm cleaning shower. It’s not so nice to be Agent-Oranged when doing so.