Thursday, March 13, 2008

The dryer died, and hooray for Stoney's

The dryer died. Like I need more to do right now. It died suddenly, which made me suspicious but then I remembered that our dishwasher died in exactly the same sudden way. And it is fourteen years old, after all.


Jon said, “Just go and buy a new one today.” Typical man remark. Does he think buying a dryer is no different than buying a toaster? When, pray, am I supposed to do this? I do not have time to shop for dryers. I do not have time to wait around for someone to deliver it and install it. I barely have time to blog about buying a dryer. And there is no way I will allow Jon to pick a dryer for me. I'm annoyed that Ron Martin Appliance went out of business, because that is where we've always bought our appliances. I will not shop at Sears. I hate the high pressure salesmen who are always lurking in the Sears appliance department. But it appears that the only other option in Charlottesville is Lowe's, which doesn't thrill me either. It's times like this that I miss New York, where I would have had more than two appliance stores to chose from.


But all this talk of buying driers is moot, anyway, because I have no intention of buying one at this time. I'm turning to my clothesline. There are neighborhood associations that ban hanging laundry, or so I've heard, and I'm glad I don't live in a neighborhood like that. I like the sight of the backyard clothesline. I used to frequently hang our clothes, as did some of our neighbors, and I felt it gave the neighborhood a friendly feeling.


Anyway, this morning, I was feeling stressed and unhappy because yesterday's last load of laundry was still wet, and I was going to have to drive all the way to Kmart after my pharmacology class to buy clothespins. Then I remembered Stoney's.


I know I criticized the Harry Potter books, but I did say J.K. Rowling is a gifted storyteller, and I like the creativity in her plots, such as the “room of requirement.” Stoney's is my personal room of requirement. No matter what I need Stoney's has it. So instead of wasting forty-five minutes driving to and from K-Mart, I walked to Stoneys, which takes two minutes. At first, I couldn't find the clothespins. I found fish hooks, cup holders, mousetraps, and something that must have been the prototype for the oven bag. There were pigs feet, and styrofoam cups, brown lunch bags, extension cords, dust masks, and brooms. At last, I found the clothespins, stored near boxes of laundry starch that have probably been sitting on the shelf since 1977. (Did you know starch will lift grease stains off your upholstery?) Hooray for Stoney's.


I'm not jumping for joy at hanging all my laundry—probably until May, when I won't be in school and will have time to research driers and pick the best one—but I can manage. When I was first married, I didn't have a washer and drier, and we lived in an ancient house that didn't even have hook ups. I had to take all our laundry to the laundromat, even when I had two babies in cloth diapers—cloth diapers that I washed myself. Our apartment was the second floor flat, and I was alone all day with a newborn and a 12 month old. At least twice a week, I would have to drag the heavy diaper pail, plus all our other laundry plus two babies down the stairs and out to the car and off to the laundromat. Nothing I have ever done in my life was as hard as that. Not even being a full time nursing student with a part time job and four children is as hard as my life without a washing machine was. When the baby was five months old, Jon left graduate school and we moved back to Buffalo, NY, into another ancient house, although thankfully, one with washer and dryer hook ups, and my mother promptly bought us a washer and dryer—the very same ones I have today.

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