Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt
I’m old, and we’ve been married a long time, so I don’t remember some things very well. One of the things I don’t remember is why I started married life with a wringer washing machine. I don’t remember if we bought it or if someone gave it to us. I didn’t mind, really. My mom used one when I was a little kid. My mother-in-law used hers most of her life. She maintained that automatics just didn’t get the clothes as clean as her beloved wringer washer. Maybe she was right.
Anyway, I used my wringer through four babies, and back then we didn’t use paper diapers. Too expensive. We kept soiled diapers (after rinsing out the contents into the toilet) in a diaper pail filled with water and detergent of some kind until wash day, and then the diapers were put through the first load in the washer on laundry day. I always dumped the water after the diapers were done and refilled it with fresh hot water and detergent that was used for the rest of the laundry: whites first, light/delicate next, dark next, and really dirty work clothes last. By the time I was done, the water was black. Each load was put through the wringer into a tub of rinse water, then again into a second rinse before being put through the wringer again to be put out on the clothesline or, if you were lucky, into the dryer.
This was routine for me. I really didn’t mind. I had friends who had automatics, and they felt sorry for me. Finally, a family friend bought his wife a new automatic washer, and offered us their old one. Worked fine, he said; he just thought it was time to get his wife a newer model.
Well, sure. Why not? And I loved it! I could put in a load, go back upstairs and tend to whatever else I was going that day along with my four kids, and get more than one job done at a time.
Well, the years went by and at one point, when we owned a small motel, I was back to a wringer washer because that’s what came with the motel. Again, I really didn’t mind. It took care of four sheets at a time, so often, during the busy season, I was doing laundry into the afternoon. We had a nice backyard with clothesline already strung. Our guest loved the fresh, air-dried sheets.
Now I have a fairly new front-loading automatic, and I really am thankful I don’t have to contend with the wringer any more. Back in the day, though, a lot of women were delighted to graduate from a laundry tub and scrub board to a wringer washer!