In the days when you couldn’t count on a public facility to have indoor
plumbing, a British woman was planning a trip to Germany. She was registered
to stay in a small guesthouse owned by the local schoolmaster. She was
concerned as to whether the guesthouse contained a WC. (In England, a
bathroom is commonly called a WC, which stands for water closet.) She wrote
the schoolmaster inquiring as to the location of the nearest WC.
The schoolmaster, not fluent in English, asked the local priest if he knew
the meaning of WC. Together they pondered possible meanings of the letters
and concluded that the lady wanted to know if there was a Wayside Chapel
near the house…a bathroom never entered their minds. So the schoolmaster
wrote the following reply:
I take great pleasure in informing you that the WC is located 9 miles from
the house. It is located in the middle of a grove of pine trees, surrounded
by lovely grounds. It is capable of holding 229 people and is open on
Sundays and Thursdays. As there are many people expected in the summer
months, I suggest you arrive early. There is, however, plenty of standing
room. This is an unfortunate situation, especially if you are in the habit
of going regularly.
It may be of some interest to you that my daughter was married in the WC as
it was there that she met her husband. It was a wonderful event. There were
10 people in every seat. It was wonderful to see the expressions on their
faces. My wife, sadly, has been ill and unable to go recently. It has been
almost a year since she went last, which pains her greatly.
You will be pleased to know that many people bring their lunch and make a
day of it. Others prefer to wait till the last minute and arrive just in
time! I would recommend your ladyship plan to go on a Thursday as there is
organ accompaniment. The acoustics are excellent and even the most delicate
sounds can be heard everywhere. The newest addition is a bell, which rings
every time a person enters. We are holding a bazaar to provide plush seats
for all since many feel it is long needed.
I look forward to escorting you there myself and seating you in a place
where you can be seen by all.
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