Waiting on a washer/dryer

You'd think I'd have bigger things to worry about, but one reason I want to get into that sweet new condo is the appliance hidden in the upstairs closet:

our very own washer/dryer.

Our first ever.

We've been using a laundry service since that fateful day when Corin was 9 weeks old and I dug into his laundry hamper for the first time since his birth and discovered that his poo-covered cloth diapers, onesies, and take-home outfit had mildewed. I bagged them up and contemplated trying to clean them in the portable washer I had to hook up to our kitchen sink and babysit throughout its wash cycle, then hang all the clothes to dry. Steve finally convinced me, a few weeks later, to toss the bag in the trash and call it a day.

I realized that, no, I could not do it all by myself. I couldn't even do it all with Steve. Not when I had a Corin in addition.

And so I turned to craigslist and found my answer. If I had a diaper service (and I had that now, too!), why not a laundry service for the big peeps as well?

All has been going relatively smoothly until the last couple weeks, when for some reason our laundry hasn't been picked up. It's been left there as a growing bag of our shame (dirty laundry, see?) for us to trip over and the landlady to reprove. She's always browbeating everyone into using the leased machines in the basement laundry room, or else the company will rescind the lease. I figure, Look, lady, it's your choice whether or not to provide laundry facilities, but you don't get to decide whether your renters use them. Still and all, I try to avoid her ire in general, so I've been trying to hide evidence of our easy fix.

basement laundry roomI hate basement laundry rooms. I hate hauling baskets, bruising my hip as I go, outside into the rain (often), down narrow stairs and through dark, fiddly hallways, having to wrench open heavy, locked fire doors and turn on timed lights on my way with my one semi-free hand. I hate perching a drink and a book to read on top of the laundry pile so I have something to do while waiting, because there's always waiting. When you're sharing one washer and one dryer with nine other units, you have to stay on top of things or risk having your clothes unceremoniously dumped out for you. You can't put a load in to wash and expect to stop by after dinner to transfer it. Speaking of after dinner, there are laundry-room hours, so you can't start loads after 9 p.m. I know there's some morning hour, too, but it never came up... I dislike having little control over how my clothes are washed and dryed, just a few standard settings that don't fit all contingencies. I hate having to scrounge up quarters. Ugh. Quarters. I would never let Steve spend them as change, because they each had to be saved. But it never worked. When a load costs minimum $2.50 in quarters, I always ended up having to make a trip to the bank or a surreptitious visit to the change machine at the laundromat down the street. I wasn't sure if I was allowed to use it, since it didn't actually make them any money and I wasn't using the machines there.

(Funny fact: I currently have two rolls of quarters from an ill-fated garage sale a couple years (!) ago. I keep meaning to turn them in for "real" money.)

I have never used the laundry room downstairs here. I am strangely proud of this fact. I want to continue to refuse, even if it makes my loved ones and me completely stinky.

But, the thing is, my parents are coming this weekend. There are limits to how disgusting I'll be when people are around to see. And smell.

So, I might have to give in if I can't get the keys to that condo. That condo and its private washer/dryer.

I don't know that I'll even like using a dedicated washer/dryer. It is, after all, still laundry. But it can't be worse than the basement laundry, right? And at least my clothes will get clean if I choose, rather than being in laundry-service limbo as they are right now.

Image of creepy basement laundry room that greatly resembles ours copyright
Anthony Smolenski of AntAesthetic Design via stock.xchng


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