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Posts tagged ‘faire pipi’

No. 109: Advice on Where to Pee

Anyone who has lived in France or visited knows that public bathrooms are not plentiful.  Unlike the States, cities in France often don’t provide nice communal toilettes for their residents and guests. If they do happen to sponsor some sort of toilette, it’s usually pretty dégoûtant, and often Turkish-style to boot. I was talking to a good French friend of mine who now lives in Washington, D.C. and when I asked her what she likes about living in the US, public toilets was on her Top 10 List.

Turkish, or as Brits call them, French toilet

Turkish, or as Brits call them, French toilet

Yep. In the U.S., if you need to pee when you’re out and about it’s never a worry. Public bathrooms are plentiful and most of the time clean, and you never have to squat over a hole to pee. En fait, my hometown of Golden, Colorado, boasts one of the “finest” public toilets in the Denver Metro area. We actually had a parade, lead by our plunger-waving Mayor, when our fancy public facility was opened (and christened the the Taj Mastall).

The Taj Mastall, Golden, Colorado

The Taj Mastall, Golden, Colorado

So, you can imagine my dismay when, coming from this small town that strongly valued public sanitation, I landed in a huge metropolis where public toilets are so few and far between. Perhaps this lack of facilities is why so many men in France pee in public gardens and on the street.

Mais, what about us girls? We can’t pee in the breeze.

Well it turns out Cécile Briand had the exact same question, and answered it by writing the nifty guidebook: Où faire pipi à Paris. (Where to pee in Paris).

Ou faire pipi a Paris

It is a brilliant little book that fits neatly in my purse, and c’est pain bénit, (it’s a godsend), especially for women.

She has listed (and updates yearly) 200 toilettes in Paris that are accessible to the public. Her guide, arranged by arrondissement and including handy maps, also includes a history of public toilets and is limited to only toilets which are:

si possible, sont agréables, en accès libre (sans fouille de sac ou rarement), gratuite et bien répartis dans la ville (when possible, pleasant, with open access (without or rarely having to have your bag searched, i.e. museums), free, and well located in the city.

While some of the toilets she lists aren’t up to American standards, at least I know that if nature calls, somewhere in my general vicinity I can faire pipi.

 Ou faire pipi a Paris


C’est pain bénit! It’s a godsend!

dégoûtant: disgusting

en fait: in fact

faire pipi: pee, go to the bathroom

mais: but

Où faire pipi à Paris? Where to pee in Paris

No. 16: The Rain

It rains a lot in France. In fact my British friends say that the weather in Paris is just as bad, if not worse, than the weather in London. According to weather sites, we get 150-175 days of rain a year here in Paris. In the last few months, we have had some major downpours, and a lot of grey.

However, lately I have been thanking the All Mighty for sending the rain, because I simply can’t take another day of sidewalks splattered with man pee. What is it with the French and peeing in public?

Please use the WC! Thanks.

Please use the WC! Thanks.

It is the rule, not the exception, for me and Taz to run into at least one man who is “faire-ing” the pipi each morning. Do they just forget to go to the bathroom before they leave for work?  Does that first teeny-tiny shot of espresso do their bladder in? Does it feel good to air their junk out in the morning, before shutting it up in the office for the day?

Just exactly what do they think is NOT gross about leaving a huge puddle of urine on the walls and sidewalks of the city?

Besides the fact that Taz tugs on his leash to get in on the splashing action, what makes it even more awkward is the casual way they finish up with a just-shaking-the-drip-off-flourish, before tucking in, zipping up, and sometimes even winking.  Aidez-moi!

So please, please, please send the rain by Saturday. The sidewalks need a shower. We’ve got a whole mess of man pee to wash away.


Aidez-moi!  Help me!

faire pipi: to pee, to go number 1