Flash in the Pan

A Quarterly Posting at Tiny Lights

My Soap Opera

by Ginger Child

When I moved to my new apartment, I was a bit put out that I had to use the laundry downstairs. I was quite spoiled by having my own washer and dryer in my previous home.

"Imagine", I said to a friend, "a house without a bathroom. Ridiculous! How can a home not have its own laundry facilities?"

Little did I know that a wonderful new experience was waiting for me! I now look forward to my appointment with my "Laundry Hour", and hoping no one else learns about this!

A luxury awaits! I grab a snack, some pure water, a book, laundry soap and the icky dirty clothes. As the quarters clink into the little slots, and the hot water streams into washer, I pour soap into these precious cauldrons of wonder, and close the lids.

No one else is here! Whew! It's quiet! No TV, no phone. I settle in to a glorious time of reading-without-guilt! The time flies.

A quiet woman comes in to remove her clothes from the dryer. I listen to the snap of the pillowcases as she prepares to fold them into little packets. I notice the private garments that are part of the laundry room experience for all of us! Where else would a stranger see these items? Here, it's not shocking, simply, "laundry."

When she leaves, the quiet returns. Only the whir of the washer keeps me company. Engrossed in my book, I manage to notice when it stops spinning, and with a sigh I lay down my book.

Reaching into the cold washer I pull out the tangled towels and jeans, and, dropping only a few socks on the dusty floor, get everything into that other amazing invention, the dryer! More quarters clink, I push a button, and head back to my book! This is the best time because it takes longer to dry than to wash!

Then, as the dryer stops, and the light goes out, silence returns, and I step up to do the job that women have been doing for thousands of years. Folding the clean clothes. Whether from the line and sunshine, or the electric dryer, the smell of fresh, clean clothes makes me want to bury my face in them.

Just as someone else walks in, I stack the laundry into my cart, gather up my book and my water (the snack is gone), and head for my cozy apartment. With the laundry all finished and folded, the work is done! It's easy to put it all away when I get home, and I am refreshed! This is so much better than the old way I thought I would miss!

Ginger Child says, "I live in San Diego, CA. I have written all my life and was first published at age 9, earning one whole dollar, in 1954! Besides writing, I make art, sing, read, encourage friends, and delight in my 5-year-old grandaughter! I recently married the love of my life 27 years after meeting him!"

Thirteenth Flash

Still Water by Linda C. Wisniewski
Letting Go by Michelle Baynes
Hushed Haven by B.j. Yudelson
Forget/fullness by Kenna Lee-ribas
19 To 19 by Carol Howard
White Pills by Eric Boehm
4th Grade Fragments by Ken Rodgers
Impaled by Mark R. Trost

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