Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Memories of a cracked toilet

I saw this sign at work this morning on the door of one of our staff bathrooms. Immediately I went back in time to 1983. Funny how a simple little thing can do that!

I don't remember exactly when we moved in, but my mother found us a house trailer that was parked on a hillside on a dirt road in a small town. The trailer was parked in a cow pasture and surrounding our little plot were cows grazing. The whole place smelled like cow shit. Manure would be too kind. Literally we could not escape the stink, even in winter. There was another smell too, especially outside near the bathroom where the plumbing was. It was the smell of gas.

We only lived there for a few months, from winter into spring. By June we were on the move again. I remember it though. It was just up the street from the home of my mother's friend, and my boyfriend (who wasn't my boyfriend just yet). We rode bikes up and down that dirt road. We threw darts into the ceiling near the bathroom for fun. I had to walk a long way to the bus stop up the road, by Jennifer Peters house. The trailer had 2 bedrooms, one for me and one for my brother. My mother slept in the living room. She had done that in the apartment we had before this place too. We had left that apartment because there was no heat. It had been so cold that our fish froze to death. In this trailer we had cats. Cats that my mother heartlessly abandoned somewhere when we moved out. I think she dropped them off in the center of town. I was upset but powerless.

I was only 12, in 6th grade. I had a great teacher that year, a woman named Mrs. March, who I think actually cared about her students. I was only in that school for a year.

Back to the trailer. One of the cats used to like to poop in the bathtub and in the bathroom sink. It was gross. I was always the one who had to clean it up. Since the whole place smelled like poo anyway though I don't know if it actually stunk.

So back to the toilet cracked. Yes, the toilet in the trailer was cracked. It was blue. We still used it though. We didn't have much choice. After we moved out, left town, moved on... someone else was living there. One night the smoke alarm went off and he got out just in time. The whole place blew up. I guess that gas leak was really something after all.

And that is my toilet cracked memory.