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The allure of the public restroom….

How do you like using the public restroom? A month ago, like any normal person, I would have said “not that well, I prefer my bathroom at home thank you!” The public bathroom is questionable…who cleaned it? How long ago? Who used it last? Most of the time I didn’t even consider it or give it any thought. It was just an unspoken preference (seriously who needs to talk about it?).

Ever since moving to the boat with its super tiny, non-flushing (it requires a 5 gallon bucket of seawater poured down it to ‘flush’), freezing (and I mean freezing) cold “head” as they call the boat toilet, I’ve felt the allure of the public restroom. At first the call was ever so slight, just a nice feeling of relief whenever I happened to need to use the restroom and we happened to be at the grocery store or Walmart. “Wow, a toilet that flushes” I would marvel. Or “Oh my gosh, it’s a reasonable temperature in here!” I would remark in my head (never out loud of course because that would be weird). But seriously the allure started slow and then it turned into a common thought whenever I was in a public place, “I wonder how the restroom is?” What the HECK?!?! Why am I so obsessed with the public restroom….it’s like I’m being allured! Then this ‘fantasy’ blog was formed. Fantasy I say, because seriously who would actually blog about this? Well, me I guess….because I just couldn’t let it go. I kept thinking about the “allure of the public restroom” blog almost as much as I was thinking about how awesome the public restroom is! Wow.

Ok so my obsession with the public restroom is starting to fade…I am starting relish my tiny, freezing cold, non-flushing ‘head’ as a part of my new normal.

Boat life is like that…learning to enjoy all the challenges that most people don’t even have to think about. Like how much power do we have left on the battery (the batteries are the size of a bulldog and weigh over 100lbs)? Like how much water do we have left (our tank holds about 300-400 gallons)? Like how much propane do we have left to cook and heat our water? How many days of stove fuel do we have left? Cause if we run out, life gets really cold, really fast (not to mention we run the risk of clogging the fuel filter)! Every resource has an expiration date and some are measurable and some require guestimation.  Nothing is predictable, almost nothing happens smoothly. But in all that limitation and living at the mercy of our environment, there is never a dull moment. Less moments to look at a phone, less moments to mentally check out in front of a tv, less moments not care about the details of my life. This intentionality leaves me feeling more alive, more engaged, more frustrated and tired at times, but more satisfied too. It’s an odd mix of emotions and this too is unfamiliar. Last week I felt God say ” you are good at adjusting, Danielle. That’s why you are here living out your husband’s version of your life dream.” And it’s true. When there is a job to do, I jump in. I use whatever I have gleaned in my life up until now and help in any way I can. I adjust to whatever is needed and try my best to fill in the gaps. The same applies here and I find myself strangely uncomfortable, sometimes lonely, occasionally really annoyed, slightly overwhelmed but also happy…at least for today.


  1. Your life and words paint a story of the past and future melding together in some distant time that many Christians hope and pray for, yet at the same time dread. Ushering in the return of Christ is all awe inspiring and where our hope lies and lives. Before that day arrives, life for humanity will reach a crescendo of hardship.
    I can live a comfortable life, and if cold, reach over and flip a switch and enjoy warmth. I don’t have to concern myself with how much gas is left for cooking, even on the outdoor grill, because that is a minor inconvenience which is easily solved in a minute or two. I have plenty of fresh water, food, and so much more. Life is simple and comfortable.
    One day life will no longer be simple and comfortable. We life in a world of decay–fresh water is finite, the same with food. No matter what kind of energy, this is also not an infinite or renewable supply. Life will become more challenging and difficult, yet we are resourceful and can battle this life’s events and circumstances to be greeted at the finish line by our King and Savior, who has carried us to the finish line and healed our wounds.
    Thank you for your inspiring words and your courage to be a frontier family in the wild Alaskan waters.

    • Thanks, Ron for your response and encouragement. I’m trying hard to connect this kind of hardship and at times suffering to what Jesus is doing in my life. It’s a hard leap for me since I keep wondering where my story (at this point in my life) and his story intersect.

  2. You are an amazing young woman and your faith will prevail. Love you.

  3. Hi Danielle,
    So glad to hear from you and get a glimpse of what your everyday life is like now! Well, you may not know this but your mother was famous for inspecting restrooms wherever we went when we were growing up! So this infatuation may have a genetic thread! So glad to hear you are happy(sometimes) despite the hardships and circumstances of your adventure. I send you and your sweet children my love.

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