Friday, August 17, 2007

Washing Woes

Our washing machine died this week. (A moment of silence, please).

This past Tuesday I went to transfer laundry from the washer to the drier and found the washing machine sitting dormant. Not "all done" dormant, but "not even started" dormant. The towels and t-shirts sat in murky, still water. Uh oh. I thought maybe there was a pause in the cycle and went back to cleaning the kitchen. When I returned half an hour later the machine still sat dormant, the towels and t-shirts occupying the same positions in the still water. I checked the cycle. "Wash." I turned the machine off then on again a few times. I tried moving the dial to the rinse cycle. I unplugged the machine, removed some of the towels, swished things around a bit and turned it back on. All of my attempts to revive the machine were unsuccessful. I finally called Al at work with the bad news, put the wet laundry into the utility sink and then scooped out the full basin of water with a plastic cup.

That evening I came home from work more tired than usual and fighting a headache. I wasn't looking forward to hanging out in a laundromat. So when Al said he would wash the laundry in the bathtub, I was both amused and relieved. After supper I got ready to take Elijah to the supermarket with me while Al and Josiah went downstairs to wash the laundry. This is what I found when I came downstairs.

I think we've used the whirlpool jets in our downstairs bathtub maybe twice in the three years we've lived in our house, but Al had the bright idea to use them to help wash the laundry! Josiah loved it. He was jumping up and down, squealing with delight. Elijah really wanted to help too, but he has a tendency to topple into the bathtub head first. I took a few quick pictures and then left for the store with Elijah. By the time we came home Al and Josiah were putting the washed laundry into the drier. They were both dripping wet, a little worn out and very proud of themselves.

Fortunately, I finished most of this week's laundry before the washing machine died and the new one will be delivered on my usual laundry day next week. As much fun as Al and Josiah had doing laundry in the tub, I don't think they're eager to try this again anytime soon.


Al Hsu said...

Washing clothes by hand was exhausting. I now have a newfound appreciation for all the generations throughout human history (and many cultures yet today) who have washed clothes by hand. It's hard to wring things well, especially heavy, sopping-wet towels, and I have no idea how clean or not clean stuff really ended up. But my arms got a nice workout, and Josiah and I had fun.

Stacey said...

Wow, what ingenious boys you have, Ellen. I actually just witnessed the alive and well culture in Mozambique that still washes by hand - made me appreciate my modern conveniences too.

Tee said...

Our washer has died and I have seen that murky water full of clothes. Ugh! The worst is when you were washing a load with lots of jeans.

Using the jets in the bathtub was so clever! LOL.

Rob Brink said...

Bathtub jets?! Al gets 1000 guy points for that one, minimum.