Sunday, July 7, 2013

Hungry Machines

          The rhythm of the tumbling dryer drums is actually soothing and predictable in a crazy sort of way.  Calm is suddenly broken by a rocking washer knocking loudly, nearly jumping off the brick platform for a quick escape.  I quickly realize the laundromat is the place to watch people,  assuredly tourist who have run out of underwear.  I recognized not one from my small town.  The aging couple takes turns folding and picking up clean dropped short socks off the tiled floor, the college age guy with long brown curls, his ear presses against his cell as he talks loudly against the din of the machines.  They take no notice of others.  
         Why am I here?  I am the owner of an on again, off again washer that is awaiting lasting repair.  So, with youngest daughter in tow, the oldest meets us at the cheapest laundromat in town.

         "Do the machines take dimes or nickels?" I ask.  I peer at the coin machine that presently accepts twenty dollar bills, and I answer my own question.  It has been decades since I lugged dirty laundry out of my house.  Suddenly, I am thankful that I even have a washer in my house.
         While the automated washer does what I paid it to do, we zip off to breakfast. "I hope no one takes my holey underwear," I joke.
         "Holy meaning sacred, right Ma?" my daughter quips.  Unexpected laughs at the laundromat!
         It has been nearly two and a half hours since we first arrived.  The dryer continues to gobble quarters like I gobble popcorn at the movies.  I know it could be worse.  I could be doing my laundry in a stream, pounding the dirt out of the fibers while flinging my delicates against a rock.  There is always something to be grateful about.

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