A quick observation I’ve made during both of my trips to the Philippines: the bathrooms are different.
I won’t even get into the tabos. I’ll save that for Jenny to explain sometime. Instead, let me briefly explain about the difference in privacy.
It’s very subtle how bathrooms are constructed in the Philippines compared to the United States. In the USA we want privacy in our bathrooms. We don’t want anyone to see our junk. When we pee and poop we want to feel like the last man on earth. In the Philippines many public bathrooms are actually situated in a spot angled near the doorway where you can see in pretty easily. I wasn’t exactly out there hoping to spy on anyone, I swear. I just have great peripheral vision, as I was actually raised by wild horses, and tend to catch things the average person wouldn’t.
This just makes it more apparent that the construction workers who built these bathrooms really had no intention of giving future shitters as much privacy as we have in America. In the USA at the most you’ll see someone at a garbage can blowing their nose. In the Philippines there were a few bathrooms where you could see the shoulders of men at urinals. Men at Urinals, by the way, is a terrible name for a band.
People in the Philippines just aren’t as freaked out about hearing someone pee or seeing the naked knee of someone who is pooping. It’s not as extreme as holes in the floor where people squat, but I also used the bathroom at the hotels more than anywhere else. I’m one of those people who need a bed nearby after eliminating just in case things get intense and a nap is required after.
Just one other observation I’ll add, the bathrooms are a little lower than the rest of the ground floor in several places. This has something to do with flooding. During my first visit to the Philippines I nearly fell a few times. During my second trip (no pun intended) I stumbled twice as many times because I was there twice as long.
On the plus side, I didn’t have to pee into any of those troth urinals some places have. I can’t imagine how anyone finds those comfortable at all. I feel like cattle or a cast member on a not safe for work viral video.