The reason why I despise liquid soap…
Hanging out at the beach this week, fortunately I survived the first two days without getting scorched. I did forget to put sunscreen on my knees, they are red. Today, my wife made sure that I was covered and everything worked out well. Sun screen is amazing but the odds are that I will look like a stripped lobster by the end of the week.
Friday night, the family drove halfway to the beach and stayed at a hotel in Greensboro, NC. The shower in the hotel had a liquid soap dispenser. I am all for saving the environment but I despise liquid soap. Not because it doesn’t work great, but because it takes me back to Iraq. Before I left in March 03, my wife gave me a bag to hold all my shower supplies. The black bag was a freebie from Lancôme or some other cosmetic maker. I’m sure I looked great making the walk of shame 147 steps one way to the shower tent with my make-up bag full of liquid soap, shaving kit, towel, shower shoes, clean clothes, and toothbrush. No one ever teased me about it, so I can only assume they couldn’t tell the difference between a Lancôme bag and an Este Lauder bag.
Walking into the shower tent was much like walking into a Turkish Bath house. Not that I have been in a Turkish Bath house, but I would assume that it is like the shower tent. The first 20 or so feet of the shower tent were lined with cots on the outer wall. Some guys sat on the cot to get dressed but I never did. I just couldn’t get excited about sitting where some other naked guy had been sitting. You can call me superstitious, but I have always thought it was bad luck to sit on another guy’s butt print.
After the dressing area, the next 40 feet of tent were shower stalls. The center lane of the tent was rubber lined and it was always best to find an empty stall before you had to pass another naked guy who was walking out. There was not really a protocol for passing a guy in the lane. My technique was to shower at an off peak time so it hopefully wouldn’t happen. Some guys liked to find a place in the back of the tent, I was a first available stall kind of guy. It just felt a little creepier the farther back in the tent I went. Actually, it was fine and safe but it was just my preconceived issues that I brought with me from the world.
The shower stalls were wide open and there was no sense of privacy. Actually, I preferred that because I felt a little more confident that everything was on the up and up, so to speak. The rule was a two minute shower or more commonly called a combat shower. The base had about 5,000 people and there wasn’t enough potable water for everyone to get a long shower. I am sure my kids would not be happy if I imposed those rules on them today, truth be known I do like my long showers so no combat showers in the Akers’ household. The other problem with the showers in Iraq was that the water was almost always frigid. It never was in the holding tank long enough to warm up, and it was quite the shock to the system when it hit the skin.
The shower procedure was simple and efficient. Turn on the water and get wet. Turn it off and lather up. Turn on the water and rinse off. Then the walk of towel covered nakedness back to the dressing area. I did my best, to get dressed without getting the muddy water on my clean clothes. Not that it mattered because there was 147 steps in the dusty dirt back to the tent.
Several times since then, my wife has tried to get me to go back to liquid soap. Every time, I have thrown a fit like a 2 year old until she buys me some bar soap. I just can’t make myself go back to liquid and I see no reason to try again and now you all know the reason behind my issue with liquid soap.
Until next time, keep on rockin.