shower heaven

The last time I was shower deprived was in 1975. I was 18 years old, just out of high school, and a few weeks into a three-month long road trip to Alaska with two friends. (I'll save you some math - I'm 52 now) We had been driving and tent camping from San Jose through California, Oregon, Washington, and Canada, and while pay showers were available in a lot of the places we stayed, somehow two weeks had gone by with no real means of good personal hygiene. I'm sure I tried to keep the stink down with splashes of water here and there, but I'm appalled now at that kind of time going by without a good steady stream of hot water running over my young hippie body. What can I say... I was different then.

When we got to the Alaskan ferry that would take us up the inland passage for several days, the first thing I did was head for the showers. Word on the street was they never ever ran out of hot water. I peeled off my grimy army surplus clothes and stepped in with a bottle of Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Soap, and didn't come out for a full two hours. True story, I swear. I washed and washed until I was good and convinced that I was clean, head to toe, over and over. Then I just stood there and let the water run over me. It never did get cold, and a shower has never felt so good in all my life.

We drove from Ashland to San Jose today, for some family time and a big send-off for my nephew Kevin, who's about to join the Coast Guard. After five months of living in our trailer, we're staying in a hotel. The first thing Rick said when we came into the room was, Did you see the shower??? It didn't occur to me until that moment that I have once again been shower deprived. Five months of using our microscopic RV shower has gotten me used to low water pressure and minimal hot water. Sure we get clean on a daily basis, but Rick's head sticks up into the sky light, I have to wash my hair in the morning and the rest of me at night, and when I really splurge and take a "long" shower, I'm in there for about ninety seconds at the most before the water goes cold. I stepped into that great big, grown-up size shower tonight and said to myself, I am never getting out of here. I think I only stayed about six minutes, but it felt like a lifetime, and the water never went cold. What luxury. I know I'm supposed to be telling you about the high points in this search for Home we're on, and believe me, this really is one of them. One thing I know - when we find Home, it will have a really nice shower.


  1. I love your blatantly lifted Getty Image. Ha! That's a great shot. I love really good hot showers too and know what you mean about stepping into a good one. My house has a fabulous shower from the 50s, it's just perfect. Come stay for a while and shower in it.


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