In Wyoming, Paddling Upstream
Nate jolted us from moonlit magic to mundane fact. "We have to take these campfire ashes out with us when we leave." He said that we must also carry out the solids from the makeshift unisex latrine hidden on the hillside.
What? Surely I'd heard him wrong. He repeated his earlier lecture that I'd managed to miss: "Urinate beside the latrine. Use the receptacle only when depositing solids."
Nate pointed to the tortuous path leading upward through underbrush and rocks. He showed us the large bucket holding toilet paper and a container of lime. We were to take the bucket with us when we went up the hill. The next guy, dancing in the woods, must wait until the bucket was replaced at the bottom of the path, as a sign that the latrine site was unoccupied.
Nate's instructions caused my bladder to pucker -- and I did not have to go.
Later that night, in my tent and in extremis, I realized that I could not use my stick to navigate that hazardous path, aim the flashlight and simultaneously manage the cumbersome bucket. Unlike Kali, I did not have enough hands.
For the first time in my life, I experienced penis envy. I'd read somewhere that fittings had been devised for women in combat, but I had not followed up at my friendly Army surplus store. What would I ask for? "Please, sir, do you sell, uh, never mind."
Need breeds creativity. I had some Ziploc bags. Despite the restrictions of my gimpy leg and layers of clothing, I filled two bags and sealed them without spilling.
My friends greeted me next morning with hugs. I tried not to draw back, but I worried that an identifiable aroma might waft from my sloshing pockets into the morning air. The line to the latrine was lengthy. I did not know if my Ziploc contents would classify as micro-trash and I hated to ask Nate.
I stowed the bags under my tent floor. Way under. When I got my turn at the latrine, I had other things on my mind. I forgot the hidden treasure.
The second night, I misplaced my flashlight and two of my new pals leapt from their chairs to help me search. Before I could say "Ohmygosh, never mind," they were rummaging through my belongings on the tent floor. One said "Feel under the tent" and started to reach.
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