If you have to ask you'll never know ! [L.Armstrong]... thats Louis not Lance.

Sep 9, 2008

Dirty Linen.

In the passage of our house stood many things. A shoe rack. A book rack. A clothes line suspended from the ceiling. And the dirty clothes box. 4’ high and a 2’ square in plan.The name says it all ? Not really.
There was a flip lid at the top. Which you lifted open and threw your dirty clothes into. When the box was full you opened a little door on one of the sides at the bottom of the box. Unloading the box was then a piece of cake. The sides were slatted for the upper half of the box. This stopped the clothes from getting musty. And allowed the monitoring of level of dirty clothes in the box. And allowed your mother to determine which day would be laundry day. And after the laundry was done the box was pressed into service once more. To stand on to reach the ceiling suspended clothesline and hang the recently evicted inhabitants of the box.
The box really came into it’s own when there was a game of hide and seek. Even the littlest inhabitant of the house could open the side door and crawl in.Then smother herself in the dirty clothes. So that visibility of any human form thru the slats was zero. All would be well until a larger inhabitant would decide that the dirty clothes box was the best place to hide. His chosen point of entry would be from the top flap. And the muffled screams that would emerge from the box when the new inhabitant of the box settled on the head of the old would give the game away.
When the fans had to be cleaned the box was pressed into service as a make do ladder. When the house needed painting the painters were allowed to use it. But only after the promise of it getting a new coat of polish was extracted.
The dirty clothes box was living on borrowed time though. The washing machine soon made it semi redundant. And when the washing machine came out with a built in spin dryer every day could be wash day. The washing machine triples up as dirty clothes box, washer and dryer. An aluminium ladder that folded neatly onto the loft allowed you to get the cobwebs off the fans.
The Mother does’nt have the heart to get rid of it. So it still sits in the passage. It’s used to store the Christmas tree that folds away in two parts. Boxes of packed away decorations.
The Mother notices her favourite tee shirt that says “Worlds Best Mom “
[ Sent by the now NRI ,littlest inhabitant ] missing. She used it just last week. Thieves . The maid ? The plumber who came to fix the washer in the kitchen tap last week ? The monkey that was trained to go into peoples houses and steal ?
It turned up at Christmas time.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

There really were monkeys trained to steal... or so I've heard! Bandra Legend...

Corinne Campos said...

Hi Clement.... who can forget that old dirty linen box - I often hid there when playing 'dark room' as a child in my grandparent's home. I'm looking out for one of those - so practical and such a lovely piece of furniture.

Thanks for the spate of posts - feels like Christmas :P

Corinne

PS: Talking of Christmas, when are the St Anthony's Road Carols slated for this year. I'm planning a visit for my parents at Christmas time and would like them to enjoy this lovely tradition!

Anonymous said...

the munyeys