This is one of those fancy French pay potties being erected on Vegamótastígur just off Laugavegur in Reykjavík. I think this is the second one in town, the first being all the way downtown at Ingólfstorg, where all the little skater kids practice their ollies and slides.
While I was taking this picture, one of the worker guys kind of guffed and mumbled scoffingly, "You're taking pictures of this?"
I replied, "Yes, of this monstrosity."
"Monstrosity? What do you mean?" he questioned, sounding kind of offended.
"I mean that it's ridiculous and that on weekends there are going to be more guys peeing on the outside of it than ever pay to go inside." And I pointed at the two bars just a few yards away.
But I guess they're good for tourists, eh? I mean the locals know that all you have to do is go up to the second floor of Mál og Menning, the big bookstore at Laugavegur 18, and use the toilet there (when you go up the main stairs its through the door to the right.) Or of course just pop into just about any coffee shop, grab a latte to go and use the facilities.
But its nice to offer this kind of service, at a 100 kronur per pop, to our friends from other countries. Valentina tells me that you have to be 10 years old to use these auto potties by yourself. That's good to know.
I've just never actually seen anybody use the one at Ingólfstorg, and this one is in a much stranger location, propped up on an odd side street that runs between Laugavegur and Skólavörðurstígur, just a wall's width from the midtown jailyard (that's the jail wall in the photo). Are there going to be signs posted throughout town directing visitors to this unit, or are the city planners just hoping people will stumble upon it by happenstance, or maybe find out by word of mouth?
Anyway, its already been tagged with grafitti and I guarantee by the end of the weekend it will have been put to use as a relief station, just wrong way out.