The 7th Floor Bathrooms

Are you a Harry Potter fan that has been click-baited by the title?

Mission accomplished!

Although in Harry Potter, Moaning Myrtle’s bathroom is on the 2nd floor, the bathroom where the troll attacked Hermione is on the 1st floor, the prefects’ bathroom where Harry took a bath with the golden egg is on the 5th floor and the bathroom where Harry cast Sectumsempra, one of the Half Blood Prince’s spell, on Draco heavily wounding him is on the 6th floor.

#HarryPotterDieHard

Nothing significant happens at the 7th floor bathrooms at Hogwarts. Providence, no? Years later, here I am penning stories about 7th floor bathrooms.

In the building where I work, each floor has 5 bathroom stalls. I have never been to the gents but I will make an educated guess that it is a mirror image of the ladies. Perhaps then I should say each floor has 10 bathrooms stalls, 5 of which are for women. These 5 shall be my protagonists.

When I was new, about 2 weeks in, I got locked in the stall on the immediate left when you walk into the ladies. This is the stall that has issues with the lock! There’s a certain clasp that keeps coming off and woe upon you if you are inside when the little machinery falls off, as was my fate. I did not have my phone on me so I could not call for help. Naturally, my somewhat irrational and overactive imagination jumped to my only option at that point being having to go out the window and possibly crawl into the window of the next toilet and thus find my way to freedom. While seriously exploring this idea, calculating the angles at which I would have to twist and contort my body to fit through the window, I heard someone come into the ladies. I called for help and was freed.

I have never used that toilet stall again.

The second toilet stall on the left, this is the one that maimed my phone for life. On the day in question, I was wearing a dress, with pockets no less! You must know that the only thing better than a pretty dress is a dress with pockets. I had been sauntering round the office all morning, pocketing like a boss, confidence levels through the roof because I could walk around without having to spend extra brain power micro-managing what to do with my hands while I walk. Swing them at my sides or put up a hand performance? (Hand performances are real btw, Google it! Complete dance routines involving only the hands.) Sometimes wondering what to do with my hands makes me question my purpose in life, having a simple solution such as putting them in my pockets is heaven-sent! On this day, with my boss dress that had pockets, when I ventured to go to the bathroom, I went with my phone in my pocket. I was listening to music, earphones plugged in. Normally I would unplug and leave the phone at my desk but I thought, ‘Why not?’.

I had not taken into account the physics of going to the toilet in a dress that has pockets. Looking back, it is painfully obvious that as I lift up my dress, the phone in the pocket will be displaced and take a dive, aiming right for the toilet bowl. The music in my ears went dead and it took me a split second to realize what had happened. My phone has never been the same again. Navigation buttons, dead. Earphone port, dead. I have been transformed into that stereotype Lunje that will be holding up a radio(phone in my case) to their ear, listening to music on loud speaker.

Besides maiming my phone for life, this is the toilet I hold out for when I need to take a dump. It has strong flushing pressure!

One quirk of this toilet though, you’ve got to turn the lock twice for it to close securely. Turning it once, as is the case with the others, is not adequate. I learnt this the hard way. No, not because someone walked in on me. The opposite happened, which is quite possibly worse.

* crinnngggggeeeeeeeeeee *

I walked in on someone.

That it took me a split second to realise the toilet was occupied despite being unlocked was my only saving grace. The alternative would have been boundless shame. Imagine forever being the girl who brute-forced her way into the toilet with the strong flushing pressure. By extension, I bet I would eventually have become the girl who really needed to take a dump so she brute-forced her way into the toilet with the strong flushing pressure.

The third toilet stall on the left is the one to never ever go to when you need to take a dump. Ever! The flushing pressure is incredibly low, you shall be left there, leaning on the flush button, getting hypnotized by the motion of your poop going round and round and round and never down into the beyond that is the sewerage system.

Before I delve into the other 2 toilet stalls, these first 3 are the ones with windows to the outside world. If your need for a bathroom, per chance, involves excessively high levels of stomach gas, these first 3 toilet stalls are your best bet. The other 2 are landlocked, no windows. Why anyone would design a toilet stall which when closed is like a sealed box, is beyond me! (Architects, are you reading this?) They, in themselves, are also just pretty dull toilet stalls. I tend to avoid them so I guess I haven’t gotten to know them that well, but the one to the right of the sinks always has some hairy situation going on in the ceiling. It looks like someone has just robbed a bank and their get-away was through the ceiling of that toilet. There’s a ceiling panel missing and wires and pipes sticking out, dangerously low. If toilet stalls could talk, I’d ask that one what led to the hairy situation on its ceiling.

The soap dispenser is ‘Made in China’. The most annoying thing ever, push it too hard and it gets stuck, then no soap for the rest of the day. Or the rest of the week, depending on when whoever comes to do maintenance decides to do their job.

This faulty dispenser got me into the habit of occasionally going to the bathrooms on the 6th floor, I’d just take the stairs. Those bathrooms, I came to realise, always have tissue. Ours have certain times of day at which, before the guys maintaining the building services come by to replenish, we are running on fumes. No tissue. I wonder if it is because the floor below us has less women.

The soap dispenser on the 6th floor always works, but their taps are the annoying bit. The taps in the building are the kind that you push then water flows out for a fixed period of time before stopping. With the taps on the 6th floor, your hand washing process is either a quickie, which never happens, no one can properly wash their hands in 2 seconds, or a process staccato-d by repeatedly pushing down on the tap while at the same time making the most of the 2 seconds of water that flows out before you have to do it all over again.

I must be honest, the idea of this post seemed more entertaining in my head.

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2 Comments

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  1. 1
    zzy

    Remember that time one of the windowless bathrooms had a faulty bulb and eventually no lighting whatsoever? I used it a few times, in pitch darkness. I think I was just trying to get back at 5-year-old me who couldn’t use the bathroom(latrine) with a closed door out of fear. 🙂

    • 2
      kathleen

      Heh heh!
      I’m sure you showed 5 year old you!

      But I avoid those bathrooms like the plague. Esp since I realised one of them has a faulty flush, sometimes the button gets stuck and then the loo just keeps flushing…FOREVER!

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