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Sunday, April 28, 2013

My Day at the Laundromat

Our washing machine blew up.

I know.  Freaky, huh?

The first part of this story is that I was on a mountain in California chaperoning my son's class trip to Astrocamp (which is awesome, by the way).  I miraculously had one tiny bar, saw that I had a message from home and listened, thinking it would be my husband saying how much he missed me.

Instead it was something like:

(frantic tone)
"Hey it's me.  Do you know where the warranty is for the washing machine?  It blew up.  It's a mess.  There's a hole in the wall.  RC Willey's warranty department isn't open again until Monday.  Please call me if you know where it is.  There's water all over the place. "

Now, if you HADN'T seen the picture, your response would have been:

(sarcastic tone)
"What the hell?  I'm gone for less than 24 hours and the house is falling apart.  No, I have no freaking clue where the warranty is because I'm ON A MOUNTAIN.   Blew up... sure."

Because I was thinking it was overloaded and pulled away from the wall and waah freaking waah.


The washing machine blew up.

And just in case YOU have a top loader LG washer without an agitator, yours may, too!  Lucky you.

ANYHOW, since I have been running around like a crazy woman this past month, I did not get my laundry done prior to leaving.  I figured I would throw it in when I got back from my business trip this week (I got home Sunday night from Astrocamp and got on a plane early Monday morning).

Clearly, this did not happen.  Since we have property damage-- a large hole in the wall and the dryer was damage during the explosion-- we are dealing with LG directly and their very overwhelmed product liability division.

In other words, no washing machine.

Or, in layman's terms, no underwear.

I seriously was out of clothes.

I should also point out that I've put some weight back on, so I should clarify- I had no comfortable clothing.  So I had to go to the laundromat

The last time I went to a laundromat was in 1993.  I actually enjoyed it when I lived in New Jersey. They had these great places called Suds-n-Duds.  They were laundromats connected to bars.
Brilliant, I know.

So I didn't have bad memories of them, but in Las Vegas, most apartments have washer-dryers.  Most laundromats are not in the best part of town.  We live near a not so spectacular area, so fortunately, there is one within 2 miles of my house.

I loaded up the car- and I mean loaded up the car. 

Did I mention that my daughter threw up Thursday night so I also had a comforter and sheets with puke on them?

So it was a full load.  About 9 loads all together.  A full weekend of laundry.

But alas, the laundromat is magical.  My son and I went and were able to combine some loads utilizing the HUGE machines. 

This was, of course, after I realized I had put the first load in a dryer and not a washer.  Oops.  They all look alike.  Fortunately, the owner came over and helped me out.

And a few other people.  The young man who gave me the tips of breaking up my loads in the dryer  to save time and money.  The other young man who held the door for me when I was taking all my laundry out to the car.  The girl with the hot pink hair and I discussed the pros and cons of overfilling the machines.

It was not the usual crowd with whom I hang.

And just when I was feeling a little mightier, I realized that I was in fact in a pair of shorts with no button on them, so I was in perpetual fear they would fall off and a shirt that was too big and my bra straps were hanging out.

In other words, I fit in just fine at the laundromat.

Laundry- the great social equalizer.

In fact, when I asked about the laundry service they offered, I could tell she wanted to say "Sweetie, you can't afford that-- you don't have buttons on your pants..."

My son thought it was a great place.  We loaded the machines, emptied them, folded-- he was the perfect assistant.  He added "Wow- now I know why you guys hate doing laundry" but we really had fun.  We chatted.  We folded.  He thinks like me, so he appreciated my anal retentive attempts to try and time the washers and dryers perfectly ("It should take us 4 minutes to unload the washer and get it to a dryer, so wait a few minutes before you start it..."-- other people would think this was nuts, he thought it was completely logical!).

But here's the best thing-- we were COMPLETELY DONE WITH ALL THE LAUNDRY IN 2-- TWO- HOURS!  It was not an entire weekend thing.  Washed, dried, folded, and nearly put away-- nearly because hell would freeze over if I ever got all my laundry put away.

What a fantastic thing!

I even had my husband considering doing this on a regular basis.  Well, not really, but I would do this again the next time I get behind on the laundry.

The folding tables are HUGE. There is plenty of room.

And it is done.  Done. Done. DONE.  I have procrastinated doing laundry longer than it took to finish it all today.

There wasn't even time to read, like I had hoped.

I used to think that "making it" meant I had a nice washing machine.  Okay, that wasn't the only criteria, but it never occurred to me that the nicest and most expensive appliance that I ever owned would actually explode.

Maybe going back to the good old days was a good thing?  Maybe the fact that my bigger, fancier life is actually making me more stressed out says something.

The conference I was at was to makeover my business- fine tune and change some things I've been doing all the years to make them "better."  I find it ironic that through all the chaos I've had this past month, the one thing that you would think would have been an "Oh crap, I have to go to the 'hood and do laundry" could have been the final straw and I would have snapped was the biggest stress reliever of all.  It reminded that sometimes the good old days really were good.  The less I had, the happier I was (for the most part). 

Except for underwear.  You truly can never have enough.

And a big thanks to the great people at The Laundry Lounge.  If you ever are in a bind or just want to knock it all out-- it's a great facility. 

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