I sometimes wonder what is the most striking thing to a westerner who alights for the first time in an asian country. Is it the culture difference, the foreign language, the exotic foods, the unfamiliar smells and sights? Perhaps, they are most impressed by our architectural achievements such as the Esplanade of Singapore, or the Twin Towers of Malaysia. Maybe these western tourists are already jaded with big skyscrapers, especially if they hail from metropolises like New York. "You got a tall building? It's the tallest in the country/asia/eastern hemisphere/etc..? Good for you. Now take me to a satay stall", is how I imagine the conversation went in the cab ride. Maybe they do visit these national prides of ours, snapped a few pictures even. After all, when you're a tourist you gotta do "touristy" things, right?
But I personally don't believe this type of attraction is what fascinates them the most. Instead, I believe it's the unanticipated and the unforeseen elements that are the most intriguing to these westerners. Things that we take for granted as mundane and ordinary may actually pique their interest. For example, I have seen tourists more thrilled by the humble rambutan fruit than they were by the towering Petronas Towers. The next example is the topic of this post itself, that is, public toilets (aka restrooms/ washrooms). If you're curious about what tourists think of our public toilets, read on. We will explore the westerners' fascination with our toilet culture pictorially below, through the eyes of the tourists themselves. I have compiled together some 'toilet photos' shared publicly on the Internet by tourists who vacationed in Singapore and Malaysia. Here we go. (Note: if you're expecting gross photos involving urine stains and/or feces, there are none.)
|by Abulic, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Andrew, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Glen Bowman, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Kristina, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Hiro, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Indi, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Map, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Saragoldsmith, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Lyndi, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Li, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Kai, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Golo, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Egui, Creative Commons, Link|
|by Mybukit, Creative Commons, Link|
This is a sign found outside a public toilet at Semenggoh Wildlife Center, Sarawak Malaysia. What amused the tourist who took this photo was the very graphic nature of the drawing. If you look carefully at the two blue stick figures, you can actually see the penis clearly depicted. In case you're still wondering, the message here is: men should pee sitting down so that their urine is not splattered everywhere. Do you agree?
That's all for today. If you've enjoyed this post, then let your family and friends enjoy it too. Please share this post with them. Thank you and good day!