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Toilets From Around the World

You spend 3 years of your life on the commode, but we bet you've never encountered these models!

Needles Not Included

A toilet fashioned from a giant cactus awaits its next al fresco patron on a hiking trail in Bolivia. Caveat squatter: Those are not corncobs in the background.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

George Washington Sat Here

This seven-hole outhouse behind Tulpehocken Manor in Myerstown, Pa., featured separate-but-unequal facilities for 18th-century users (including, possibly, George Washington): The women's side was larger to accommodate cumbersome hoop dresses.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

Stand-up Gals Only, Please

The "Urinette" in Montreal's Whiskey Cafe is, yes, a urinal designed for women. That scary-looking white protuberance? It's actually a handle, used to rotate the cup 180 degrees into position. A wall dispenser provides paper covers for each successive user.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

Peek-a-loo

By day (left) it appears to be nothing but a keyhole-shaped manhole cover on Moor Street in London. Every Thursday at dusk, however, a three-man pop-up urinal rises into position (right) from below street level, providing semiprivate relief for the long weekend to needy pub-crawlers.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

P-tree Dish

A so-called P-tree provides on-the-spot relief for music lovers at Denmark's annual four-day Roskilde Music Festival in late June.

AP Photo

Marble Magnificence

These elegant Victorian urinals were installed at Scotland's Rothesay Pier resort in 1899. Built for just $850, the facilities were saved from destruction in 1994 by the Strathclyde Building Preservation Trust — which paid $480,000 for the restoration overall.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

Courtesy Is No. 1

A staffer from Japan's Toto Ltd. activates the company's "Sound Princess" toilet, which emits artificial flushing sounds. Now standard in new construction, the device was invented to conserve water: Japanese women had traditionally flushed continually to mask their bathroom visits.

Koji Sasahara/AP Photo

May Thine Aim Be True

This composting toilet — an unusual variation on the world's ubiquitous "squat toilets" — greets enlightenment seekers at the Yoga Magic Eco Retreat in Anjuna, India.

EyesWideOpen/Getty Images

Kanga Loo

A toilet shaped like a kangaroo and a urinal that's bearly there await upscale buyers at a bathroom fixture store in Izmir, Turkey.

Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

Throne of Gold

Vladimir Lenin may or may not have been punning when he said that gold toilets would be useful reminders of capitalist waste. But a Hong Kong jeweler took him at his word: This 24-karat solid gold toilet in the city's 3-D Gold Shop will set you back a cool $3.5 mil.

Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images

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