The Bathroom

The basement was flooded with sewage. The toilet wouldn’t flush and the corner stores did not have public bathrooms. What was one to do? I waited for as long as I could, but when nature called there was nothing I could do. Peeing was not an option.

I walked next door to the woman who often sat on her stoop. She would joke with the neighbors and say hello to everyone that lived in our house.  I found her sitting on her stoop, drinking lemonade.

“My bathroom doesn’t work and I hate to ask you this, but do you think I could use yours?” I had only said hi to her a few times and she didn’t really know us. Her smile flashed broad and white as she nodded her head with a knowing smile.

“Of course honey, these old row houses always have plumbing problems.”

She led me through the front door of her identical looking house. The outside was a mirror to our house, but from inside it was a different world. The furniture was mostly broken and the floors were half way ripped up with un-finished wood pannels. A narrow stairwell led upstairs to the single bathroom.

“Just don’t flush, I have to jiggle the handle afterward.”

I didn’t know how to explain to her that this wasn’t going to be a pretty sight. The bathroom was a small room with only a bath tub and a small toilet with a metal chain attached to the handle.  I sat and looked out the window into the back courtyard.

“Thank you,” I said again as I left the house.

A few mintues later I saw the woman throwing my shit out her window. Her toilet didn’t work either apparently. She must have not wanted me to know that it was broken. How long had her pipes not been working? Her smile was big when I asked if I could use her bathroom, she never hinted that she had the same problems and maybe a similar money situation.  Through pride and manners, she never said a thing to me about it, not then, not ever. I am eternally grateful.


Dr. K called me the other day and reffered me to someone who is willing to prescribe me suboxone. I’m ecstatic. I called him today but the earliest time he has for an appointment is two weeks away. God give me strength.


One Response to “The Bathroom”

  1. What a load of shit! ha ha

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