Tuesday, May 09, 2006

My Rainbow Connection



I have a lovely little laundry room just off my bedroom here on the 9th floor of the building. It's sunny and bright and has a tiny terrace perfect for hanging out my freshly washed sheets and towels. It's by far the nicest laundry I've ever had and I wouldn't be exaggerating to say that doing the laundry in this room makes me happy. I know I am a fortunate women in this world because I not only have a washing machine but also a dryer. I'm not sure where to find the statistics on it but I know that a huge percentage of families in the world still do their laundering by hand, and even fewer have the convenience of a machine to dry their clothes. I lived ten years in Europe without one myself.

When I was throwing a load of shirts into the washing machine this morning I spotted this wonderful line of just washed items. Look how they are hanging. Neatly arranged in a perfect rainbow of colour. I love the bright pairs of socks on the left, and the orderly way the colours flow from lights to darks. You can't really see the surrounding buildings but they are not fancy by any stretch of the imagination. The clothes line is in the garden of a very typical little villa in the middle of Tirana, more falling down than building up. Far older than the building I live in, and full of charm and character.

I didn't see the woman who hung this artful line of colour this morning. She was up much earlier than I was today. I was only beginning to do my laundry and she was obviously already done. But I'd like to know her, and in fact I know I'd like her, because you see, I hang my laundry just like she does. Socks must always be hung in pairs, toes facing the same way; towels and pillow cases must hang in a rainbow fashion, from light to dark; and though I can't see her pegs, I bet each item is hung with two matching pegs, just like mine.

17 comments:

Cynthia Rae said...

I have a dryer. Well it depends on what you can call a dryer. The ones here in Italy seem to take longer to dry than the sun!

I have to say, that is some pretty laundry hanging out there!

Cyn

traveller one said...

I know these euro dryers really are annoying and I rarely use it because it takes soooo long to get it done. You're right Cynthia- the sun is often far faster!

Seesaw said...

Beuatiful, colorful photo!

LondonLily said...

That looks so neat and well presented. I think the pegs are all one colour too.
The dryers in Albania are probably a waste of time, especially in summer. They waste too much electricity,and take too long. Plus, it's always so hot, sometimes the first few pieces of laundry are already dry before you've even finished hanging the rest of the clothes up!!

Turtle Guy said...

your title would do kermit proud! I got warm fuzzy feeling to know that you'd notice something as simple as someone's line of laundry - and to see the beauty in it.

A Taoist would say "to find joy in the ordinary, the daily scratchings in the garden (or in this case, laundry) is far better than to wait for the big events in life to bring us joy.

ITS said...

Somewheeeeeeeere,
over the rainbow...

Ginnie said...

I loved what turtleguy said and totally agree! This post says a lot about YOU, Kim, and is what makes you Soulful to me. Knowing you see the connection with this woman and would want to get to know her is what makes living so worthwhile. This post really inspired me! Thank you.

rowena said...

Certainly reminds me of Italy, as them laundry lines are everywhere! Funny thing is, when I moved to Italy I begged my husband for a dryer, even if I don't use it much (the energy cost!). When I flew back here to Hawaii, (where I always used the dryer despite all this glorious sunshine), the laundry line became the preferred "dryer" of choice. The simply task of hanging the wash comforted me as I was missing my husband and Italy so much.

Expat Traveler said...

I love it! Incredible pic. I think the pegs are all wood so they are matching for sure. But looking at the large pic I'm in heaven.... So lovely. IF I had to do all the laundry I've done this week via clothes line.. I'd be in for a long week!!! I think I counted 10 overloaded loads... IT would have easily been 20 if I were in Europe!

traveller one said...

Thanks for all the sweet comments.
Finding joy is all about keeping your senses on alert. I try to constantly be aware of my surroundings and to make mental notes to myself about what I experience. I want to have a heart full of memories to cherish when I am old... and wearing purple :)

voodoox said...

I do to belive that the dryer is such a waste of electric energy especially in the mediterranean countries and sometimes dameges the garment. On the other hand I was wondering how did the lady of the photo washed those clothes? Does she have washing machine? Or even she has one does she get the electricity to make it work? Cheers

traveller one said...

voodoox... I wonder the same things!

Ardit said...

Washers in albania are pretty cheap, but, still some women prefer to hand wash the delicate stuff.

My mom back home has a very nice washer, yet she always washes some nice dresses, or when she has few garmets to wash.
She feels it is wasteful to run a whole laundry load for only few clothes.

As for drying, sun can be great, but it can also fade the colors of the garmet and make them hard, if you keep them for too long.

traveller one said...

Those things are true Ardit. If I hang out my laundry I try to keep it out of the direct sun which in Albania can be very strong!

DAI said...

As one that spends quite some time in Tirana at least twice a year, can relate a lot to what you just wrote and to the pix taken of hanging clothes. Posted myself a similar one last year in my blog. I also live in a modern building when here (in Tirana as I am currently) and can tell you that you're lucky to have your own wash space. Also agree with some of the comments you received. In Italy most people I know don't see the need to own or use dryers, and hang their wash in the shade -Albanian sun is even stronger and more powerful :-))
Keep up the good blog and great pixs!

traveller one said...

dai... Thanks for dropping by my blog :) Let's hope the weather warms up just a bit soon here in Tirana!

miss tango in her eyes said...

That is the most artfully display of laundry I have ever seen!