Friday, 19 October 2012

Wash Day Blues.

It is that time of year again, when I make my annual pilgrimage to the launderette. They have an extra large washing machine there. Which is useful for me, due to the large amount of accumulated laundry I manage to amass over the course of a year.

I get such a kick out of finding a forgotten item of clothing that has been buried in a composting heap of unwashed articles for many months. I expect many of you have experienced the same thrill. Some laundry piles, especially those where there is more than one person living in the home, must be enormous. How exciting!

There are people, and you are going to find this unbelievable, there are people who actually do their washing every week! There is even a rumour in the village that Mrs Bagshott-Carruthers-Smythe from the big house, does laundry every day! Or her maid does I should say. I do stress that this is only a rumour. No one has been able to prove anything, because the crafty woman has got one of them tumble dryer things and so never has to put washing on the line. So please, I beg of you, do not start writing her nasty letters just yet.

Personally I cannot understand why people as wealthy as the Bagshott-Carruthers-Smythe's should do laundry at all. Surely with all the money they have, it would be far easier to have new clothes delivered every day? This is something I do. Although on a much smaller scale. Every few months weeks I will buy a new pair of socks, whether the old ones are dirty or not, and simply throw the old ones away. I don't have them delivered. But I have recently found out that these modern supermarkets that are springing up everywhere, do have a delivery service. So I am considering it.

Anyway back to the launderette. When I was waiting for my first load to finish, (max heat, heavy soiled, prewash) I got into conversation with a bloke who was using one of the tumble dryers. We didn't start conversing immediately, because he was a stranger, so first of all we had to spend a few minutes glancing suspiciously at each other out of the corner of our eyes. We do that in this village, glance suspiciously at strangers. But after a while I let my curiousity get the better of me and ventured a tentative hallo. Well not exactly hallo. More like "All right mate." Well that got him started. You should have seen his face. It got kind of twisted and really upset looking.

"She sent me down 'ere," he said. "The only bleedin' day off  I've 'ad in bleedin' months, and she sent me down 'ere with the bleedin' washing. I've 'ad enough of it to tell the truth," he went on. "Fourteen grand. Fourteen bleedin' grand I just spent on the 'ouse, and now she wants a new bleedin' kitchen. Nine bleedin' grands worth of bleedin' kitchen. I'm up to 'ere with it." He raised a hand above his head to demonstrate how far up to 'ere he was. "Seventeen bleedin' years we been married. Seventeen bleedin' years. Are you married?" He asked me, "No need to answer that," he said, "I can tell by looking. You ain't, are you? You look too bleedin' 'appy. I was about to tell him that I had been married once but he hadn't finished yet. "I just been bleedin' rooked out of seven grand. Seven bleedin' grand. Bloke didn't pay me for a job I did. A granite fire surround. He is just refusing to pay up. Offered me three and an 'arf grand. I'll 'ave to take it. I got people after me for money. I likes to pay me debts on time. But three and an arf? The blokes 'aving a bleedin' laugh. I thought about sending the 'eavies in, to give 'im a slap, but I ain't really into that sort of thing. I got to get some money coming in soon. She's talking about an holiday. Somewhere warm she says. Gawd knows how much that's gonna cost. The last one cost over four bleedin' grand, and...."

"Hey look!" I interrupted him. "Your washing's dry."

As he emptied the machine he told me that the reason he was doing the drying in the launderette was because the tumble dryer at home had been causing damp problems in the ceiling above it. "Probably gonna cost several bleedin' grand to sort that out," he said, "I've 'ad it up to 'ere." As he was folding a large pair of ladies bloomers he wasn't able to show me this time, just how far he'd had it up to. But I got the impression it was pretty far up.




16 comments:

  1. So do you wish you had not bothered starting the conversation or do you enjoy these little glimses of another persons life. I love it !

    As for the bleedin' this and bleedin' that, its such a southern expression. Up here in the north he would have been married for 17 bloody years.

    By the way when you take off your clothes you should throw them at the wall, if they stick they need washing. If they land on the floordrobe you can wear them again. Simples.

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  2. I enjoy them Eileen. I'm always thinking of the next blog post.

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  3. I am always amazed that people are willing to share personal information with absolute strangers. Thoughts and anecdotes are one thing but personal laundry is not to be done in public.

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  4. i think you were both happy to be in the launderette together. that is how women think.
    fun story!

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  5. Loved the story, and I wish I could laundry once a year. Unfortunately, the little people I am responsible for need clean clothes and they are unwillingly to do it themselves. Such selfish children. Have a good one, buddy, and thanks again for entertaining me with tales from your life.

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  6. When I read the first couple of paragraphs about washing once a year ... I went Urgh! Then I got a good laugh out of the 'ear bashing' you got from a stranger. I bet those knickers he had in his hand were 'big girls bloomers' too!! Sue

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  7. That's the trouble with talking to strangers, you never know what you're letting yourself in for. I wonder if he's a blogger, if he was he could get a lot more of his chest :O)

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  8. Aren't you glad you decided to do your laundry at that time?? I sure am because I got a hearty laugh at your escapade....poor bloke...married 17 bleedin' years....and to the same woman!!!

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  9. *chuckling* I'm glad Valerie sent me in your direction.

    I adore the simple solution you have for the socks. I'm a mismatched sock wearer myself--feel free to steal idea, it's steal worthy! :-)

    In the meantime, I'm stealing the 'leave it for another month' concept and trying it out beginning today! Oh, and I'll blame you, of course, when he-who-thinks-laundry-isn't-optional asks about the heap on the floor. :-D

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  10. Seventeen bleedin' years...and he does laundry... now that is impressive! Was this poor bloke a little on the skinny side of heath? Sure hope he wasn't the one who installed the dryer at home.

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  11. Valerie suggested I visit today, and I am glad she did. What a colorful village you live in. Do you write often about Mrs Bagshott-Carruthers-Smythe? I am going to read some more.

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  12. I have actually had piles of clothes like this in our house, back when all the kids were still at home and none able to do laundry, my wife actually suggested the idea of disposable clothing, this sounds like a blog post in itself I just may have to write about.

    Now before I get to sounding like your friend from the laundromat I just want to say I really enjoyed my visit here :)

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  13. Just do what George Hamilton the actor did with his socks. Wear them once and HEAVE 'em! Less laundry to do that way.

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  14. Maybe you should switch to every two years ;-)

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  15. When I lived in an Apartment, trips to the laundromat were really better than anything that Youncould watch on television. Since I don't watch TV I DO miss those outings. Thanks for this morning's laughs, John.

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  16. Well, you didn't have to guess at how he feels!

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