Wednesday Wanderings When You Need The Loo

If like me you have a bladder that’s about as strong as a very weak thing, going for a long walk can be a frustrating experience. I love walking, and I’m currently trying to build up my walking ability so that in a couple of years’ time I’ll be able to walk around the coastline of the UK. But it’s hard when I need to pee a minimum of once an hour. 

Recently however I was proofreading an article for one of Bohemiacademia’s clients. The article was about the best apps for expats, and it mentioned Flush. I had never heard of Flush before, but it sounded like something I needed to try:

Wherever you are in the world, there are always certain things that need to be done. And when you got to go…

Especially useful with those who need specialist facilities, this app uses location data to quickly guide you to the nearest appropriate public toilets. The app interfaces with mapping apps to let you know walking, driving or public transport directions.

The Best Apps For Expats; Andy Scofield for

Well, this is right up my street, I thought. At the time I was planning a trip to Italy, so I thought I’d download it beforehand and see how it performed.

Very well, as it turned out.

I started out in Modena, a smallish city which I’d never been to before. When I was out walking, I opened the app and asked it to find me a toilet. I usually have my location services turned off, but you need to turn them on in order to use Flush, understandably. It brought back a map with pins in the nearest public facilities:

Clicking on a pin will give you directions to the toilet you have chosen. It will also let you know roughly how long it will take you to get there.

I used it in Modena with no problems, and a few days later I used it again in Florence.

It worked very well for me and made me more confident about going out walking even though I didn’t know the area. I haven’t used it in London yet because I’m fairly familiar with the toilet facilities here (if all else fails, just find the nearest Starbucks), but if my time in Italy is anything to go by I’d certainly recommend it. As you can see, it works in languages other than English.

I also found that it took me to places I might not otherwise have gone; the first toilet in Modena was inside an art gallery, and I ended up looking at an Ad Reinhardt exibition which was rather fun, but which I wouldn’t have sought out had it not been for the app.

So, there you have it: if you’re wandering and you need a wee, Flush is the app for you.

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