Thursday, January 25, 2007
It was often said in the past that New Zealand was a rather old-fashioned country.
I hasten to emphasise 'in the past', lest I offend any of my Kiwi readers. Of course these days NZ is in the forefront of forward-thinking. Where else in the world could you jump from a great height with only a piece of elastic between you and oblivion, or roll down a mountainside encased in a transparent rubber ball?
One area where the country is still behind the times, though, is in the provision of toilet facilities. For some reason, the Kiwis have yet to replace the phrase 'spend a penny' with 'spend 99p in McDonald's'. Every small town, every picnic area is graced with clean, modern and free facilities.
I recently had occasion to visit one such 'super pooper'. The door closed at the touch of a button. Piped piano music played in case I fancied joining in with a trumpet concerto as I passed the banana. At the touch of another button, poo tickets were dispensed automatically. And when I went to wash my hands under the automatic tap, the dunny flushed in symphony.
There was even a bright yellow sharps bin in the corner, in case your diabetic Uncle Sid got caught short. And not a sign of that ubiquitous fellow Big Dick who appears to be perpetually 'seeking similar'.