home again home again jiggety jig

Yesterday was a travelling day  and it took energy away from my brain to cope with the exigencies involved in moving my body through time and space.  So a day without a blog is a day without a clear thought, I guess.  You have to put your mind on hold and simply deal with immediate needs, like coffee, comfort, and the WC.  Do you say WC? It's short for  Water Closet, if I remember.  The feminist novelist, Marilyn French, titled her best-selling novel, The Women's Room, with a slash through an earlier word, "Ladies'".  The nomenclature is irrelevant now because there are icons indicating the men's and the women's  toilets, no words required.  The icons, of course, are obsolete.  The  icon for the woman is a silhouette in a skirt.  These days you see very few women wearing skirts in airports or anywhere else, for that matter.  I'm still thinking about bathrooms, also called wash rooms. Brits used to call it the Loo, dating from perhaps Norman Conquest times when a lot of French was spoken in England and people shouted "Gardez l'eau" when they threw the contents of the night chamber pot into the street below. Watch out for the water is a euphemism.  Younger people, I notice, avoid evasions like that. They usually say, "I have to pee."  I have always had difficulty saying "pee" because my mother thought it was vulgar. (Her younger sister got around it by saying "piddle".)  Lousy, that's another one.  I mean, I wasn't allowed to say "lousy" either.  Like most gently reared women of my vintage, I grew up with euphemisms.  I didn't know the correct technical words for any private parts.  I was surprised when my first-born and very  young granddaughter referred casually to her vagina. But I wasn't shocked; pleased, rather.  I was very young, maybe five years old, when I attended a birthday party of a contemporary, not a close friend but a schoolmate at private school.  (I was going to a private school because I was reading and my parents didn't know what to do with me; also there was no kindergarten in those prehistoric days.)  The hostess told me where the lavatory was.  I didn't know that word.  I knew laboratory, oddly enough, and wondered  why she was suggesting I do some scientific experiments at a party. All these fragments of information most of it skewed and inaccurate, drift like  jetsam  (not flotsam) in the free-wheeling space in our minds.  No wonder I'm tired afar a day of travelling.