I left home for my Toronto trip minus one essential accessory. Since I usually have to pee twice during the night, a urinal sits beside my bed. Not this time.
No problem. After all, this is the metropolis of Toronto and Shoppers Drug Mart is an easy walk from the B&B. Let’s see … “incontinence” and “constipation” – sounds like the perfect aisle. Nope, and actually no aisle did the job. “I suggest you drive to Shoppers Home Health Care on Lawrence Avenue near Bathurst.” Thank you, sir. I know those stores have lots of medical equipment – wheelchairs, walkers, urinals.
So off I went in dear Scarlet, 4:30 on a Friday. Rush hour can’t be that bad. Wrong. I stopped and started and stopped all the way along Lawrence. Strangely, I was pretty loosy goosy about it all. Gave me a chance to drink in a 200-metre-long mural under an overpass, full of vibrant faces and the wonders of the natural world. Some of my friends in adjoining cars were quite antsy, however, zipping in and out of lanes, only to end up one or two car lengths ahead.
Finally a left turn into Lawrence Plaza and I was there. I strode confidently into the store and was greeted by a woman wearing a huge smile. “Oh, sir, those have been backordered for two weeks.” (Sigh) All this way for no peeing vessel. What I did find on the shelf was a yellow plastic peanut-shaped thing, about two inches high and eight inches long. I calculated how much pee it would hold and whether that would fulfill my nightly needs. “Oh, just buy it, Bruce.” $1.12.
Homeward bound to the B&B. Altogether the round trip was one hour and twenty minutes but at least I wouldn’t be stumbling to the hallway bathroom at 3:00 am.
I sat on the edge of the bed and did my thing in the soft glow of the table lamp. I watched expectantly as the urine climbed the walls of the peanut. The flow stopped about 3/8 of an inch from the lip.
Open my bedroom door. Open the bathroom door. Put up the toilet seat. Return to the bedroom. Grasp the peanut at each end. Walk oh so slowly out of my room, down the hall and into the bathroom, negotiating a variety of changes in flooring. Think “What if someone comes by right now?” Worry. No one. Tip the contents into the toilet. Rinse the vessel. Slink back to my room.
Okay, this doesn’t rank up there with an entrancing conversation or an inspiring concert but it still was a true life adventure. Sometimes you just have to go with the flow.