Pooping in public

Using the restroom in public is never relaxing but at times a necessary adventure. There is always the standby of McDonald’s or Starbucks with free public bathrooms. When stepping off the train in Europe make sure you have some loose change to pay for a potty trip. Each region has different challenges that you may not be aware of. Asia uses a squatty potty. If you are not used to relieving yourself hanging over a hole in the floor, then you may end up with wet feet. Backpackers have more of a solitary advantage but also have to dig a hole first. This isn’t in public, but it’s not on the privacy of your own home seat advantage.

Walk into a hotel lobby as if you belong there to avoid the front desk.

You may even be able to wander around to find snacks and cookies just don’t look too out of place.

On the unpredictable road of travel, food can be a friend and then seemingly turn on you. That is why it’s important to keep different toilet locations in the back of your mind as a safe bet.

There are a few tips for any country you find yourself in where you are crossing your legs and asking with big hand gestures trying to make yourself understand. I recommend having some small change on you to pay for the maintenance “tip” basket sitting next to the strick looking bathroom attendant. Having your own paper is safer than hoping for the best after the door shuts. In some places in Asia, you must grab paper before you enter the stall. The best tip I can pass along is to wash your hands and stay regular!

Be local

Go local! We have heard it said, but what does that mean to you right now. If you are sitting at a desk not doing work you should be or sitting by a pool on a far away island you can find what is off the beaten tourist path of chain stores and malls if you look around.

Being a local in your current city, home town when you visit family, or find something local in a far away place. It’s always worth it to go local and see how people are going about daily life. If the locals love a great restaurant, it’s safe to say the food will be worth the trouble.

If you need to be pulled out of your fast food comfort food zone then listen to these reason why going local, anywhere, is important everyday.

  • Big box stores dont need anymore of your money.

Which do you think gives better service and quality, the multiple billion dollar corporation paying minimum wage workers who have trouble answering questions or the small locally owned businesses ran by a family and is tied into the community. I would rather put my money into the hands of a small business owner even if its cost a little more.

  • Google doesn’t always know everything.

There are places in this world (believe it or not) that are not connected to a Facebook page or Google maps. When you are in the far corners of the Earth you may not be able to understand what information is on the internet. If you happen to pass a place where the tables are full and there is a line, there must be a good reason and its usually worth the wait. “Greasy spoons” and “hole-in-the-wall” restaurants have some of the best homemade cooking in every city.

  • Locals know what’s happening

As you are strolling by a busy lunch spot for the afternoon rush of the blue collar area and decide to see what the fuss is all about then you have made it past the first step. The next part is tricky (not really) and involves speaking to others. Ask your server or eat at the bar and talk to a person near you. See what is going on around you. Even if you are asking about what is going on in your own area you still can learn about amazing places from word of mouth. When you are in a place with a language barrier there are always still ways to ask about great things to do. Draw a picture, translate a question, or hand and body language talking. It seems like a lot of trouble but the rewards can be amazing, even if it’s just the tale of getting lost on the way.

Supporting the little guys doesn’t just benefit the small business owner. It is good for you the consumer! Usually going small means it’s not a touristy spot and the prices are cheaper. In the cases that you pay for for an item chances are the quality is much higher then the cheaper box store version. I would rather purchase a homemade gift to a gift anyone could buy on Amazon.

This is a photo of a woman I meet selling woven elephants on the sidewalk outside a market. I gladly paid for this fine craftsmanship and a very unique souvenir from my time in Thailand. Go out and get lost, or meet your neighborhood Baker and make a new friend. It may be the most fun thing you do all week.

Body Worlds Exhibit Worldwide

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This amazing exhibition shows real cadavers on display to show how the human body works and the effects of different health choices. This is a worldwide traveling exhibit in multiple locations at the same time. Every time I have been to this display I see different pieces and I am always amazed. This is the true definition of being in awe of the human body and what it can do. Not only what the body can do but also what it can put up with or even overcome. Showing that healthy choices make a healthy long-lasting body is the main goal. What better way then to visually show the damage. I feel we all like to pretend that what is going on under our skin is working well enough. Seeing the lung of a smoker next to the lung of a non-smoker there is no room to argue. There are also very powerful demonstrations and pieces that show disease and disabilities.

wandering in the dimly lit room with black covered walls and black lined cases that makes the bright spotlights make every detail more dramatic. I started to look down at my own body looking at what would be right under the surface. Being is sports my whole life I kept looking at different areas that I have injured before and seeing how the body is woven together. Such a fragile inter working that we often take for granted and abuse. Treating your body right is the ticket to a quality long life.

Dr. Angelina Whalley and Dr. Gunther von Hagens are the creators of the traveling exhibit and their goal is preventive healthcare. To show first hand the effect on the daily decisions there are interactive displayed as well as the perfectly preserved models arranged to spark your wonder. Plastination is the process of preservation invented by Dr. Gunther von Hagens in 1977. The process replaces body fluids with plastic, then are positioned and harden by heat, gas, or light. The complexity of nature preserved forever. It is odorless and easy to transport to the international locations. Great detail and hard work goes into each body that is being prepared. It could take up to 800 hours to prepare a whole body. Then sent over to be put in a series of baths of acetone and then dehydrated for around three to four months. Only then does the plastination process take place, forced vacuum impregnation. That process takes about six to eight weeks. After it comes out and drips dry and is still flexible. With the help of pins, wires, staples, and other aids the model starts to take its pose. Getting into the final pose can take a few weeks up to a few months. The final step is to cure the specimen and preserve it forever for all of our viewing pleasure.

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Body Worlds is such an amazing learning tool. People usually spend about one to two hours looking and reading. I have never been disappointed when I have gone to an exhibit like this. Around every corner is a new area of life. Breaking each area up by body part like lungs or kidneys and the damage unhealthy choices cause. Or other rooms were filled with a portraits of different family from around the world and what their monthly grocery looks like all stacked up compared to the other families from around the world. The choices you could see were made up of locations and culture influences. Still more rooms have what reconstructed joins look like or plates with screws drilled directly into the bone. There is so much information and yet you still walk away with questions, not to imply that there was unanswered questions about the exhibit, but rather open and expand your mind to lead to more questions. This is what a good science display will achieve no matter the age. Learning especially about how our own body works is priceless. With that being said the few times I went i notices it depends on where the show is being hosted. The bigger the science center the more it cost. Also the bigger the science center the more pieces of the traveling exhibition can be enjoyed. There are some large pieces like cross sections and large animal specimens. I would guess $10 -$25 USD for tickets.

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The creators seem very stright forward about the negative effects on the body. Such as the smoking man with his leathery skin and blackened lungs. There is a healthy non-smoking lung sitting next to a smokers lung.

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The X Lady

The one-of-a-kind inter works of this display is well worth the the time, fee, and traffic. There are multible exhibitions in differnt parts of the world thoughout the year. There no excuess not to go to this eye opening display. It will be somewhere near you soon, and if, not travel a little you know you’d love it. @heidvastag

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