Thursday, July 2, 2009

Bathroom markings in Dresden.

Since I'm here branded as the low-culture lady I want to tell you also about the bathroom markings in Dresden. 

One of the places we were last Friday night in Dresden, and I cannot now recall which place, the bathrooms were marked as follows:

one of the doors had a picture of a man with a big red circle around it and a red line through it; the other had a similar picture of a woman, crossed through.

I stood there thinking about this and had pretty much decided to go into the one with the crossed-out man; then I noticed that someone had drawn a little anatomical woman sign (circle with a cross below) on that very door next to the big crossed-out man, and on the other door a little anatomical man sign (circle with arrow to side) was drawn on. For clarification. For people like me who were taking a while to figure out what we were being told.

Never saw that particular way of marking men's and women's rooms!

Then, for good measure, in the funky place called Plan-Wirtschaft [a German pun, shall explain below] where hubby and I had breakfast both mornings in Dresden, the bathrooms had, on the men's, a very very large 3-D lighted up green ladybug; and on the women's, an equally large, equally 3-D, equally lighted up pink flower. 

So I thought: great! It's a thing! In Dresden, the bathrooms are all going to have unexpected signage and I'm going to collect them and write about them.

Then (possibly because we kept going back to the same place) I never saw any more interesting bathroom signs. Sorry 'bout that.

[Oh, I was going to explain Plan-Wirtschaft. OK, so:
1. Dresden is of course in the former East Germany.
2. In the former East Germany, being Communist, they were into a planned economy, which in German is Planwirtschaft.
3. But Wirtschaft is also a word for a restaurant or bar or eating place. So, funny joke, Plan-Wirtschaft is the name of a place to eat in the funky touristy hopping part of now-capitalist, once-communist, Dresden] 

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