Thursday, 22 March 2012

How To Do Laundry On An Island

So I know that in a land far far away, most washers and dryers are inside. On good days, when I close my eyes, I can still conjure up in my mind that fairytale land from somewhere in the back of my fuzzy memories. Now I do laundry in a tiny apartment on an island. Or, rather, outside of a tiny apartment on an island. Some people do have indoor laundry. A lot of people do not. In fact, a lot of people don't have any laundry facilities. I'm not saying this is how everyone on islands does their laundry, but I'm speaking from my personal experience of nearly ten years and two islands. Here's how laundry is done in my life:

No telling what's taken up residence under there since the last load of laundry.
Step One: Go outside and remove the tarp that's on top of the washing machine. Be careful of any frogs or creepy-crawlies that have taken up residence in the tarp since the last load of laundry. Curse the gross dirty rainwater that was previously gathered in the fold of the tarp that you just poured all over your bare feet. Turn the machine on so that it starts to fill.

Whew! Safe from the creepy-crawlies. For now...
Step Two: Go back inside, slipping on the tile floor in the kitchen because of your now wet feet. Completely forget that you started filling the washing machine.

Watch out! Slippery concrete!
Step Three: Realize that the machine is now halfway through the first cycle. Run outside to stop it before the lid locks, but not so fast that you slip on the super slippery mildewed concrete outside. Fish out the bits of dirt and leaves that somehow managed to slip through the tarp into the machine and are now floating in the wash water. Once the bits of dirt and leaves are removed put in the detergent and the laundry.

Step Four: Try not to forget that you have laundry outside. The machine doesn't have a buzzer. If you forget for more than a few hours the laundry smells mildewy and is useless. Also, if you forget and it gets dark outside you have a whole new batch of frogs and creepy-crawlies that  have moved back into the tarp. They're even froggier and creepy-crawlier at night.

At least our laundry enjoys a good view.
Step Five: Hang laundry on the small line on the back porch. Pray that it doesn't rain while the laundry is drying. If the laundry takes more than a day to dry because of rain or damp air, it smells mildewy and is useless. Set up the drying rack inside for laundry overflow. Fill the drying rack. Continue hanging laundry on every door knob, window crank, and chair until it is all done.

Step Six: The next day, pull down the (hopefully) dry laundry. Repeat the entire process with the second load.

Extra Credit: In the event that a hurricane or tropical storm is on the way, do as much laundry as possible. Not only will there potentially be no power for an undisclosed amount of time (no power = no laundry) but you might as well use as much water as you can because the storm will refill the cistern.

1 comment:

  1. But look at that view Melissa! Pretty place to hang some laundry.