We camped last night behind a gas station. We were 30 miles from Lima so camping options were limited. The bathroom at the gas station was out-of-order so we had to “go” in the fields in the back.
This morning I found privacy at the edge of a row of banana trees. The morning was cloudy, with thick fog hanging in the valley. The ground was muddy and everything was wet with mist.
While I was squatting I became aware of a strong poop odor, something I hadn’t noticed when selecting my location. Apparently I wasn’t the first to pick this particular row of banana trees for an impromptu bathroom.
Then I looked down and saw a mushy turd squishing out from beneath my right foot. I wished for many things at this moment (like for my foot not to be in feces) but one thing I wished for was thicker soled shoes, because the poo had squished up onto the mesh outer of my shoe, getting stuck in the nooks and crannies of the fabric.
It was a bad way to start the day. I was standing in someone else’s dump. There’s something particularly revolting about stepping in human excrement. But as I crouched there finishing my business with my right foot lodged in a deuce, I had to laugh as I remembered a story Leah told me about her first trip to Lima.
The sewers in Lima had flooded and the only way back to her hotel was to walk through a couple inches of raw sewage. She was lamenting to her brother-in-law how it was the worst-experience-ever. To which he responded something to the effect that if this is the worst thing in her life, then she’s had a pretty good life.
I’m beginning to think this is some kind of initiation to Lima.
In times like this, it’s good to keep it all in perspective. While there are worse things than stepping in someone else’s crap, take it from someone who’s been there…it’s shitty and it stinks.