I was waiting for the shuttle bus when I decided I’d better use the bathroom before beginning the three hour hike to the foot of the Franz Josef glacier, so I stepped inside the shuttle booking office and asked to use their restroom. The clerk directed me to the public toilets across the street. They were pay toilets – 50 cents – but I didn’t mind. During my travels I’ve learned that pay toilets are always cleanest.
I chose a stall that showed an unoccupied green light and inserted my 50-cent piece. The green metal door slid open with a whisper to reveal an immaculate ceramic tiled room with stainless steel stool and hand-washing unit. I was impressed. I stepped inside. Immediately, a voice came over the speaker with instructions: “Welcome to EXCE-Loo.” (‘Loo’ being British slang for toilet, mind you). “Please press the button to close the door. Your maximum usage time will be ten minutes.”