Friday, November 16, 2007

Coin-operated Laundromat

Not much has changed. I haven’t been to a coin-operated Laundromat for quite a while. However, after my visit today, I can say, not much has changed.

There was the mess left behind by weary young mothers, who had evidently tried to keep small children amused while waiting for the wash machines and dryers to do their job. And there were the umpteen clothes dryer cloths left floating around the floor of the facility. Also a few crumpled candy wrappers, and several discarded quarter wrappers, all indicating a busier morning than the present slow afternoon.

And of course, there were two out of nine dryers “out-of-order”, and at least one washer “out-of-order” on each side of the machine rows. In all my days of using the Laundromat, I cannot recall a time when all the machines were operational simultaneously.

Today was my obligatory “fall cleaning” of the bedding. I have those comforters on the beds, and those “extras” for changing the bedding as needed. I opted to do the bedding today, safely before Mom’s visit this coming week for Thanksgiving.

Upon entering the Laundromat and seeing the extent of “out-of-order” machines, I questioned the wisdom of my decision. However, I was using the double and triple-sized machines, and they were all up and working. As it was others had shown up before me to use the regular-sized washing machines, and had, therefore, filled most of the working dryers.

By the time my over-sized loads of comforters came out of the machines, I had to leave one comforter awaiting a dryer, while the others began the process of drying. And, as it turned out, the spin cycle on the double-load machines must have been very poor, as water was actually dripping off part of the blanket. I could tell one roll of quarters wasn’t going to cut it; so off my cousin went to the nearest bank to purchase another roll for me before she took off to do a host of other errands.

As time passed, I would occasionally get up to test for “dryness” or to load more quarters into the slots. I continued reading my book. And there were, off and on, fellow patrons coming in to throw their wash from machine to dryer, or if carrying in baskets, they would begin to look for empty wash machines that did NOT have “out-of-order” signs on them, nor were sitting there still filled with wet laundry, awaiting their owners to come and retrieve them.

Gratefully no tribes of wild local natives showed up, replete with gooey little hands covered with melted chocolate, splashing sticky pop across the floor and drying tables, and knowing all the really bizarre things kids who frequent Laundromats with their mothers know to amuse themselves as their mothers turn their backs on them to visit with other women who are more than willing to turn their backs too.

In my young married life I had lived through two times of no machines of my own--so I’d been there with the wild tribes, and done my share of mopping up the gooey and sticky before I could fold my clothing on the tables. I had finally expressed with gusto the fact NEVER AGAIN--and my hubby had taken the hint and purchased brand new machines with VERY long warranties and the ability to purchase extended warranties!

Now when the season comes to wash our comforters, I’m pretty savvy about what time of week and time of day to hit the Laundromat. Today was a good day. Not too messy. Not noisy. I got to the working dryers without much of a wait except for that one last dryer. A minor matter. I got my book read in peace. And even the bathroom was fairly clean!

Now all our bedding will smell and feel good. And it will be another season before I need to return. God is Good to Me!


Jan said...

Isn't that a job that you just hate to tackle?? It is such a hassle to go to the laundromat but so much easier when you have large things to wash/dry. But then when it's all over, you get home & get all those clean things on the bed...ahhhhh, what a nice feeling.

Mariposa Speaks said...

Wow, this is an eye opener for me...I'm still with my parents and we just send our comforters and beddings to the laundry...
I'm glad you got home satisfied...and who do not love a freshly changed bed covers and comforters?!

anno said...

Gotta admit, my favorite appliance in our house is the large front-loading washer. Glad you're done with this chore for another year!

Wholly Burble said...

jan--yes, those double and triple-sized machines are a real treasure, and make the trip to the Laundromat tolerable. At least if you have several "loads" you can do them simultaneously with several machines!

mariposa--may you NEVER have to learn the toils of the Laundromat scene LOL--but if you do, know most all of us have survived LOL.

anno--my "dream house" will have a triple-sized machine JUST for bedding. But these king-sized comforters wouldn't even wash decently in my front-loader (even though the salesman swore they would LOL)--so I've surrendered to the fate of the Laundromat for this task.

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

I was at a coin wash recently, too. Coin laundries used to be my favorite place for people watching and journal writing. I have several notebooks from my 20s filled with coin laundry musings.

Enjoy that fresh bedding!