Disclaimer: while the story is entirely true, the name of the place and of the participants were withheld. Any match between the surroundings as could be glimpsed in the attached photos and the real place is purely coincidental and serves purely for illustration. The photos, however, are true and not altered in any way.
Warning: recommended for reading after a meal.
Well, it happened in a Swiss city of X. - one of the multitude of smallish Swiss cities famous for various industries including (but far from limited to) a manufacturer of a famous brand of (Swiss, of course) watches.
The weather (as you shall see in the pictures) was inclement, the skies were drizzling all the time, intermittently increasing the output to something that could be called rain. So we (the Team) decided to limit our visit to a stroll through the main shopping street of the burg, naturally led by the concerned female half of the Team.
One of the unusual features of the shopping street was proliferation of a strange kind of benches, certainly unsuitable for use by the strollers, even if the day were sunny and the benches were dry. Each bench contained several items that, besides making it difficult to use the benches for sitting purposes, quite obviously served for advertisement of the nearby shops or other, less clear sources of various goods.
At some point, after seeing the female half of the Team into one of the shops and losing sight of the other male Team member, I have looked at one of these benches. The latter, obviously dedicated to advertisement of the toilet paraphernalia, clearly showed signs of damage:
The third toilet seat and the attached cover are missing. Well, a usual sign of vandalism, which obviously succeeded to creep in even here, in the citadel of law and order, says I to myself, ready to move on. Then something else, almost imperceptibly and very subtly demanded attention from my already overloaded touristy brain. I mean that dark object on the middle (or what was initially middle, when the original exposition was intact) seat.
Nah, my overloaded brain told me, probably just some publicity gimmick and commanded my body to move on. The body, however, instead of complying with a clearly given order, liberated my trusty Canon from under the coat where it was hidden from the drizzle and snapped a shot, just in case.
Than the body, still under its own steam, moved closer to the bench and took another shot, while the eye, the one dealing with the viewfinder, probably continued to transmit some data to the clogged brain. Because the brain slowed down the usual touristy parts and decided to process the info from the next picture (you may click on it to see a close-up if you so desire and have already eaten):
And at some point the brain has decided: this is not a marketing gimmick, no sir. This is, plainly speaking, a turd. Not the biggest turd that this brain has ever encountered, and not the most monstrous-looking one, but still a substantial, self-assured and completely composed turd. And while a turd, as such, is fairly closely related to the products advertised by the bench, the placement of the said turd cannot be considered beneficial to the essential purpose of the advertisement.
At that point in time the second male member of the Team popped up from somewhere, and we have exchanged some thoughts on the subject of the bench and its contents, but without any investigative progress. We have almost turned to leave the immediate area of the mysterious bench, when a biggish black SUV stopped near the bench and discharged a well-dressed gentleman. "Black SUV. Cops. Swiss cops. Crap. Trouble with that crap picture. Would demand erasure of turd shots..." was the muddled stream of a compulsive photographer's consciousness.
The Gentleman, however, whipped from his breast pocket a small oblong that was in no way similar to an official police ID, strongly suggesting, in fact, a simple business card. And at a close look it appeared to be a business card, which contents I am not feeling free to disclose.
The Gentleman expressed a few compliments on account of my Canon, which compliments, as you can safely assume, found their way to the heart of the owner. Since his only means of photography are limited to his smartphone camera, the Gentleman explained, he will be happy if I could send him the resulting photograph, to be used in some (unnamed) local press outlet. A discussion of the protagonist of this story (the poop) ensued, the Gentleman explaining that this is not the first time someone does it and, probably, not the last. The Gentleman didn't offer any theory regarding the purpose of poop laying in this specific location, thus not contributing to the progress of investigation and leaving the issue wide open. He, however, ventured an opinion about the nature of the poop substance, saying that, while he didn't perform any scientific analysis of the contents, he is considering the poop being an artificial creation. Not that we had any judgement on the matter, neither of us willing to get close enough to the subject for an olfactory or any other sense being involved in investigation.
Meanwhile, one of the employees of a nearby shop brought out a pail with soapy water, paper towels, gloves, spray of some kind and other cleaning implements. Donning the gloves, the Gentleman quickly and efficiently (showing the acquired skills of a veteran dog owner) disposed of the poop and proceeded to clean the general location of the latter to a pristine condition, while continuing to exchange pleasantries with us. His composure during the whole process was nothing short of admirable, I have to state. Try cleaning up some poop laid on the living room sofa by your dog (or your child, for that matter), while exchanging a fluent and humorous discussion with your dinner guests, if you don't see what I mean.
Well, suffice to say that we parted our ways with the Gentleman on a friendly note, but the Mystery of Swiss Poop remained unresolved. Who knows, maybe one of these days a letter will arrive, explaining the diabolical conspiracy behind the poop layer(s) actions.
Or, (deity forbid), a mysterious package... but here I feel I should stop. Better leave the mystery unexplained, I suspect. There are things better left alone...