Put yourself in that one situation where, within moments, you have contemplated every life choice you've ever made that has lead you there. Were your pants down? I'd be willing to bet they were.
The year of 2020 has obviously gone down in infamy but frankly, I refuse to relate to it. Without leaving myself all dried up of wonderful stories I will keep to the important bits. Once divorced and twice married by the age of twenty-six I was somehow dancing on a cloud while the rest of the world was in the early stages of catching fire. We had a beautiful January Hawaiian wedding on the beach where we had our first date, the sunset would have made a poet weep.
Our reception was at Chili's. Obviously.
By the time we got settled back into a routine, my immigrant husband had grown bored of splitting his days between doing my laundry and lying on the sunny beaches of Oahu, work had ended for the season and I was left with decisions to make. He has big dreams and I am oh-so-busy with my existential crisis so we decide it is time to move along in our adventures, regardless of the impending pandemic.
We visit my home town on our way. During the visit I have stress induced sleep paralysis with constant visits from my sleep-demon, Steven. Our flight to Heathrow gets cancelled three times. I think Steven might be developing a personality at this point. My father has developed new conspiracy theories just in time to run out of his "happy pills". It is time to go.
Heathrow airport has strange toilets.
Now it is the husband's turn to stress. I have the navigational skills of a paperclip and his home town happens to be London. He might just lose his new wife because she can't get on a tube fast enough.
We get our rental car, a nice SUV. Everyone is fascinating to me with their beautiful accents and lack of small talk. I'm trying not to walk too American. Yes, I mean "walk". This is my first foreign country, cut me some slack. I eventually figure it out. We are now on our way to Aberdeen Scotland to take Satan's Bath Toy ferry up to Orkney. I call it Satan's Bath Toy because the North Sea is Satan's Bath and that ferry has no business being there but I digress. The drive through the country is fairly uneventful, we stop and take pictures at every major tourist spot. I am just breathing in every beautiful thing and enjoying every beautiful moment with my new beautiful husband with his beautiful movie star face. Everything is just BEAUTIFUL.
We are budgeting this trip as broke newlyweds so we decide to just sleep in the car, parked in a layby on the highway. At the point where we stopped, the highway was just a two lane job through the countryside. I cannot tell you what towns we are near but my husband could point out EXACTLY which hill we are parked next to. Yes, it has come to that point in the story. For lunch we had stopped at a Tesco and each gotten a 3 for £3 meal deal. Considering the price, I was pleasantly surprised and I got to learn what the "pickle" in a Pickle and Cheese sandwich really was.
Did you know some people get diarrhea every time they travel?
I didn't until around midnight, parked on this hill.
At this point in our relationship, my husband and I have actually only known each other for about 7 months. Scandalous, I know. We are sleeping in intervals, waking up every couple of hours to turn the heat on. We are both awake, warming our toes against the vents, and I'm taking a good long look into his soul. I am telepathically SCREAMING to him that I don't want these next events to be our demise.
"I need to shit." I say in the most innocent voice I'm capable of.
"Oh, okay, do you have anything to wipe with?"
I hold up the handful of napkins from Tesco.
"Alright, I need to piss anyway. I'll go out with you."
*fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck* "okay..."
We climb half way up the hill and he strategically picks a spot where his body will block me from the shine of any passing headlights. A most romantic gesture. I can hear the sheep on the other side of the stone wall above us. It is time.
My guts have been wrenching for the last hour and I'm desperate but still VERY hesitant considering this man I've only known for less than a year is standing six feet away. I wait until he gets his business started, hoping that will be distracting enough. I will spare you the details but the sounds made on that hill were enough to make the sheep go silent. I sense a disturbance near me, of course he heard it, but is he going to run? I don't know where we are, it is freezing, my bowels hurt, and I am at a very compromising angle. I CANNOT afford to be abandoned. I should really stop panicking and start cleaning myself up.
Then I fall over.
OH GOD DID I LAND IN IT?
Remember the beginning of this story, when I asked about that one moment that had you thinking about all those other moments which got you to that point? This is my moment. This is the defining point in my life where I decide that what I've found is true happiness. I have potentially fallen into a pile of my own shit but I am just happy to be alive. My first time out of my home country and THIS is where the universe put me. I'll take it.
I had narrowly missed the mess.
I get cleaned up, he's asking if I'm okay, and I'm busy worrying that I've just defiled ancient spiritual grounds.
Once we are back in the car we giggle some more about the noises I managed to make and I scrub my hands obsessively with napkins and bottled water. I change into different sweats and underwear. Just in case. This sets the precedent for the rest of the year.
Remember kids, true love will stand next to you while you shit outside.