when a person gets deployed, there are many creature comforts that are violently removed from their lives. these are things most civilians take for granted on a daily basis, and it is hard to even notice them until they are gone. having a personal vehicle (people in the states might refer to them as 'cars'), getting to decide what you are having for a meal, being able to choose your outfit for a day, and not having to walk 200 feet to use the bathroom.
this last issue is most troublesome for me. i have seen the accommodations in iraq improve from a hole in the ground that i dug every afternoon to relatively spacious metal boxes complete with two windows. the bathroom situation has gone from a hole that you dug whenever the need arose to having actual toilets and sinks. the reason i don't see this as a massive improvement (i know it is, but bear with me here) is because the holes that i dug were at my convenience while the facilities here are a 20-second sprint from my bed (up to 45 seconds if i can't figure out how to operate the lock on my door due to limited amounts of sleep).
the closest place to (legally) relieve myself is a port-o-potty that smells like bleach, feces, and cigarette butts. this pungent trio never fails to make me retch and roll my eyes. the actual bathroom stalls arent much better, but have much more entertaining material scrawled on the walls. you can find everything from scathing commentary on my chain of command (El Chupa, anyone?) and email addresses for what i am assuming are homosexual rendezvous. also of note: the stains, scents, and the abundance of mysterious hairs.
the shower trailers are perfect in theory, but are poorly maintained. they appear to be cleaned regularly, but retain remnants of every person who has used them in the past 4 years. the floors are always soaking wet, leading to embarrassing slips and the occasional sprawled-out naked guy who always happens to be in the way of getting to your towel. the shower heads break, on average, every 100 minutes. the most puzzling of all the shower mysteries is how people neglect to take their undergarments with them. there is always a pair of Hanes sitting on the floor, marinating au jus.
i dont mean to sound like an ingrate, but i would rather have something less 'nice' in favor of something more hygenic and better-maintained. call me picky or 'clean,' but the 4-foot saudis or malasians or whoever they are need to start working harder for the 43 cents we pay them to clean our shit, puke, and piss off of the floors of our bathrooms.
recap: bathroom sprints suck, dont touch the Hanes, pay raise to 45 cents DENIED