I am not always good

Yesterday, I found myself shocked.

In disbelief.

I needed a few bits from the supermarket. (How can ‘a few bits’ come to 54 Euro’s?) We pulled up at one on the way home and, as usual, four-year-old Akasha needed to nip to the loo. (Perhaps you can feel my exasperation, we hadn’t even grabbed a trolley yet.)

I found the toilet door in record time (I am becoming a pro).

I saw a notice on the door, but I ignored it, (being in German and that requiring effort on my part, and it being evening and me trying to remember which few bits were actually required). I pulled on the door but it didn’t open, leaving me looking like a complete fool person with an enquiring mind.

I read the note. OK, if I’m honest, I picked out the most important looking words and got the gist that I had to go to the cashier and ask for the key.

We walked, well, I walked normally and the little one did a John Cleese impression in an attempt at holding together her four-year-old bladder.

Feeling some urgency tugging at my arm, I interrupted the checkout assistant and asked her politely for the key. She informed me that I would need to give her a deposit.

I opened my bag, a little surprised, thinking a Euro should do.

Only to hear her say, “Your car keys or your mobile phone will suffice.”


She repeated her request.

I repeated her request back again. Just to make sure I’d understood. The little one squirmed.

You may or may not be proud of me:

I did not call trading standards.

I did not squeal and laugh hysterically and look for Candid Camera.

I did not start a rational debate on why I should trust her with my phone/contact details/sim card or my car keys when she/her boss evidently, did not trust me with a roll of toilet paper.

I did not ask to see the manager.

I did not give her my keys.

I did not give her my mobile phone.

I did shake my head a lot in disbelief.

I did inform her (and anyone else listening) that I would prefer to shop elsewhere.

I did leave the shop with a husband and four children in tow. One doing some weird-looking yoga positions.

I did whip down the pants of my four-year-old right in front of the shop and ordered her to pee “there, right there.”

And she did let loose onto the stones.

Would you trust your car keys/mobile phone to a stranger in order to use the toilet?


28 thoughts on “I am not always good”

  1. Did they think you were going to steal it??? Not sure I’d shop somewhere that has the sort of customers /neighbourhood where they feel this is necessary!

  2. Hahaha! I love it! You did the right thing. 🙂

    I hate it at cinema previews when we’re asked to hand over our mobile phones. We’ve had lots of arguments with security over it. At least at film previews you can understand why they don’t want you taking them in, but as a deposit against loo role? Please!

    I love your write up! Very funny.

  3. Love it! OMG that is hilarious right in front of the store ha, ha! Think I would have done the same! That is crazy asking for your keys or mobile. And for the record no way would I leave that with a cashier/worker/person I didn’t know.

  4. I LOVE YOU.

    I was asked for my license at one place. I laughed, left my stuff on the counter and walked a half-block down the street to a place (a) without crazy requirements and (b) with an appreciation for the merits of repeat customer business.

    I get that you don’t like people occasionally scratching profanity on your wall. The fix is much less expensive than the fix for my replacing my phone and/or license. NFW, my friends. NFW.

  5. I’m sooooooo PROUD of you for not giving in….
    I would *never* have given my keys (and … don;t pass out… I don;t have a phone!), BUT you make ONE big mistake…
    Why did you LEAVE THE SHOP before Little one relieved herself? I’d have gotten her to do it as close to the offending checkout counter as possible!
    …little kids have accidents all the time right? … very very evil grin 🙂

    ALL the customers would have seen it was a small child, EVERY reasonable parent has been in this situation and would not have minded, and yes I am being very naughty, a little “justice” and rebellion against the stuck-up attitudes of supermarkets would have flowed over the floor.

    1. You made me laugh again.

      I can give you the address if you like… Actually, I’d come with you, that would be a must see (if you care to do that with your little(ish) one).


  6. lol! Funny story, but I’m shocked too. Here in the UK they are closing all the public toilets to save money. Supermarket loos will soon be all we have left.

  7. Maybe it’s the cut backs and they’ve sacked their toilet cleaner and this is just a ploy by staff to stop customers using their loo?

    What treasures must they have in the loo that warrant customers handing over their phones and keys to ensure ‘security’.

    Complete madness – great post.


  8. Haha, I’m so glad I have boys because they really can pee anywhere.

    That’s one thing I really don’t like about many places in Europe. The lack of access to a restroom, to do something so natural and impossible to avoid. I’m grateful to live in the US because there are restrooms everywhere and I’m the one who needs them more than my kids…

      1. After the absence of toilets on your boat trip, I think you’re on to something. And since you’ve been to France, you can definitely extend your toilet rant to other countries than Germany. I won’t feel bad if you tell me French toilets (if you find them) are gross!

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