use the bathroom BEFORE you leave the house.

Saturday: 1:20 PM
Katsumi waves goodbye as the Fung Wah express pulls slowly out of the station. I sit back and relax, looking forward to several hours alone with my ipod and the 3 books, 4 magazines I brought for the trip. I read “Waiting for Godot”

which actually reminded me very much of my job. But I don’t post about my job, so MOVING ON.

Saturday: 5:00PM
The trip should take appx. 4-5 hours, depending. So about 3.5 hours in, I become startlingly aware that i have to go to the bathroom. But I wait, because really, the bathroom on the Chinatown Express? no thank you.

Saturday: 5:15PM
The bus gets pulled over. The whole bus. Full of people. One of which (me) is having an “emergency”. And as one might expect, the officer takes his sweet time writing the ticket.

Saturday: 5:30PM
Finally, we are on the road. I am doing deep breathing, trying to remain calm. Then the bus hauls off and goes over the wrong bridge. Now, granted, I don’t know FOR SURE that he went over the wrong bridge, but one sign said “manhattan” and the other side said “queens”. We did NOT follow signs to Manhattan.

Saturday: 5:45PM
We pass some enormous cemetary that I remember from my last trip, and I despair. Then we hit traffic. I figure it’s time to take matters into my own hands. Shedding my pride and dignity like so much cheap satin, I stand up and walk towards the bathroom

Saturday: 5:46PM
No dice. Bathroom is BEYOND GROSS. Oh-shit handles (no pun intended) are conveniently bolted to the wall (so you don’t topple when the bus takes an exit ramp at 45 mph) and there is NO SINK. Did I say gross? I meant G-R-O-S-S.

Saturday: 6:05PM
Bus pulls into Chinatown. I bolt. Chinatown is appx. 100 degrees, and the heat only serves to churn the ambiance of this always-pungent neighborhood to a vomit-inducing frenzy. I am lurching through like a junkie in withdrawl, looking for Little Italy and their (hopefully) clean bathrooms.

Saturday: 6:10PM
SALVATION!!

I scurry into the cafe, deftly maneuver past the hostess and into the bathroom, where i ensconce myself for the duration of my relief. And it was good.

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