Monday, February 4, 2008

February 4, 2008 - Addicted to Laundry

Hello, my name is Julie, and I´m an addict.

Not a day goes by that I don´t think about laundry. Most days I am compelled to do some. A Pila (laundry porch) is a necessary part of any house I consider moving into. I even have a favorite soap (I´ve tried three).

How did it start, and how did I get this compulsive about it? Let´s see...

First, I am in a country where clean, well-maintained clothing is very important. We were watching an ad on TV with a friend once - it showed how a woman wore a dress around town all day, then tossed it in the washer (the advertised product), but used a new ¨steam¨ setting to refresh the dress. My friend wrinkled her nose, and said yeah, but what about the smell!?! If a Tica´s clothing gets dirty in the course of a car ride, she immediately points it out - she is letting us know that it just now happened, and we all know that she will clean it as soon as possible. We used to come home from school and change immediately into ¨play clothes.¨ We got nothin´ on these children! You see them in several outfits each day!

Second, we are in ¨transition¨ now, so we don´t have our furniture (and no washing machine), and it is not worth buying too much - we have to store everything we did buy already, until we return. Since we´re here only a few months, it seemed a good time to experiment. Ahhh - there we have it - see where experimenting gets you?

Third, while we aren´t really hurting for money, we *do* watch it. And I *cannot* justify paying a *dollar a pound* for someone else to wash my clothes!

Fourth - and this is really what kept me doing it after experimenting - it is *fantastic* exercise! And you have a built-in motivation and timetable! Picture this - you have a roman bench on an incline (the laundry sink hits you at the hip), and you repeatedly bend at the waist (agitating clothes) with weights (wet clothes) in your hands. For each piece of clothing, you must do this at least 10 times for the wash cycle - then two more repetitions for the rinse cycles. AND, between reps, you get to wring them out! This works stomach, back, shoulders, arms, and legs - how complete can you get? Like any exercise program, you have to build up your program. First start with undies and socks (they´re pretty urgent anyway), then shirts. You know you are really strong when you can do jeans, towels, and sheets (woof!). What better motivation can you get - if you don´t exercise, you don´t get clean clothes. If you don´t have clean clothes, you can´t go outside. So, you´re stuck at home - do laundry! (OK, I can see my addiction is getting the better of me - I´m thinking about all those dirty clothes waiting at home.)

See what can happen when you confess? You start obsessing. Rick is threatening an intervention...

1 comment:

JulieAndRickInCostaRica said...

In response to Waynei´s comment ¨Are you using a wash board when you wash clothes?¨
I don´t use a washboard - but I have a good solid surface, and a scrub brush!