See this idealistic filter? It automatically lets you know things are going badly image wise. When someone is trying this hard to make their pictures look good it’s probably because the reality is just plain shitty (pun, as ever, very much intended).
That was the case when I visited the gorgeous suburb of Titirangi, a place I have always loved and had a distant vision of residing in. For those outside Auckland or New Zealand in general, Titirangi is one of the prettiest suburb in the greater Auckland area. It is leafy and relaxed with a bucolic, 1970’s, macrame, post-commune charm that makes me want rip off all my clothes and sunbath naked in the dappled sun-light sprinkling through the tree-filled canopy. Well perhaps not, but it has pretty trees and a wandering cock!
Seriously this dude was just wandering up the street, through shops. Not a care in the god damn world.
The public toilets are on the main drag which is small but appeared to contain the vital services. I’m making a stabbing guess that the toilets were built in the 60’s or 70’s and have seen no love since. Directly beside the aforementioned bathroom is the newly renovated Lopdell House and Te Uru gallery.
My picture does not do it justice. The main building is a lovely late 1920’s piece of architecture but this is the view from in front of the toilets on a grey winter’s afternoon.
The bathrooms are nestled between the gallery and a set of shops but look more like a forgotten lot rather than in keeping with the charm of the village. I found reference on the interwebs to a plan for regeneration but it seems nothing has happened since the article was published in 2009.
The charm of the parking lot/out of date loos can be seen in the memories of evenings left behind;
Beers and lacy knickers, at least you know you’re still in West Auckland.
The interior of the toilets has a certain prison-chic with bars on the windows, broken paper dispensers and grotty polished metal rather than a mirror.
Mmmm who doesn’t love the cold damp feeling of no seat?
Honestly the whole thing was quite grim.
Cleanliness : 4/10 It wasn’t overly dirty but perhaps the general run-downess of the place distracted me from the actual grime?
Interior : 2/10 Stalls, broken, dingy, dark, rapey, the whole hog of unpleasantness on the inside of this unit.
Exterior : 8/10 The position of the bathroom is pretty damn good, a refurb or new build on the same spot would be advisable. There is parking behind and further down the road, it is near shops and other amenities (which may give me a panic attack causing the need to hide). The village has a gorgeous, friendly, bright and nonjudgmental atmosphere which lessens my anxiety even on the worst days. It does open up on to the main road so perhaps in a new build they could put the doors on another side, off a walkway or verandah.
Safety : 5/10 I had to go 50/50 on this one because from the outside the village feels safe, calm and chilled out but the second you step inside you would be forgiven for expecting to see someone passed out in a glue-huffing stupor. It would be homemade eco-friendly hoof glue though, obviously.
Snugglitude : 2/10 I ummed and ahhed about the snugglitude of this place due to the massive dichotomy of the internal and external atmospheres. But the key question always has to be how well the facility functions when I’m hiding, mid panic and how long I would take to feel better/less conspicuous/panicked. In all honesty I believe I would feel more relaxed up the road in the dense bush breathing in the damp rain-foresty air than inside with the pervading feeling that the jail matron may enter at any moment to take away my innocence with her ribbed baton.
Total : 21/50
I agree sign guy, I really do.