At the Laundromat

Last weekend started with another Friday night session at the laundromat.

I’ve been going since the flood–so often that not only am I starting to recognize the regulars at the laundromat, I’ve become one myself.

There’s the grizzled older couple with a white minivan. They take up almost every machine in the place with their seven or eight loads of laundry (mainly towels and duvet covers). They work silently and efficiently, getting through their huge task with little wasted effort.

Last week I arrived as they were leaving. I was grumpy that my washing machine was still out of commission (damn flooded basement!) and may have even grunted as I hoisted my heavy laundry basket on my hip to push open the door. I’d loaded the first of my three machines when the man came back inside and handed me a crusty sweat sock.

“You dropped this in the parking lot.”

Wow! I strive to be a kind and helpful person, but I don’t think I’d have picked up someone else’s dirty sock.

There’s an older guy who wears lots of navy blue (there are no secrets in the laundromat!) and chats more than I like. He sits by the door and jumps to open it for everyone, coming or going. No one has to struggle with a heavy door and an even heavier load on his watch.

My favourite fellow laundromat-er is a handsome young man who carries his laundry in a suitcase. (Why didn’t I think of that? It’s so much more practical than a basket.) He’s all high cheekbones and dark denim with the odd white button down thrown in for contrast. Although he hasn’t directly helped me like the other regulars, he has flashed me a couple of shy grins.

I can’t overstate the moral support provided by a smile from a cute guy, even it you’re a much older sailor’s woman.