Western Massachusetts

Sunday at the Internet Laundromat

It’s 9 a.m. on a Sunday, and so far, we’re the only ones at the Wash ’n Wire Laundromat in Shelburne Falls. That’s a really good thing because we scored the two jumbo-thon washers, which means we can wash all the clothes we dirtied this week in two machines.

I haven’t washed clothes in a Laundromat in decades, except perhaps on a camping trip. The place we’re renting does have a washer in the cellar, but I ain’t going down there to use it. We’re on the first floor of a very old house with a very old, musty basement. No, thanks. Besides, there isn’t a dryer, and given the moisture in this river valley in Western Massachusetts, they would never dry properly on a line outside. Besides this is only a temporary situation until we find a permanent home.

Funny, what you get used to doing. Hank and I seemed to wash clothes all the time when we had our own homes, certainly before we moved here three weeks ago fromIMG_4022 Taos. Now, we wear our jeans a bit longer. A sniff will tell if that shirt could be used a second time. I do draw the line at underwear, however, with an absolute one and done.

So the Wash ’n Wire Laundromat it is. While the clothes are in the washers, I use the free wireless to peruse the news online and catch up with friends. Hank takes in whatever reading material that’s been left behind. There’s a TV here, but we don’t turn it on.

Of course, there are signs about rules. I like the ones on the wall featuring Laundromat humor. Here’s one: “LAUNDRY ROOM — Drop your pants here.” Someone framed baby socks, presumably left behind.IMG_4021

Yes, there’s a clean bathroom and when it’s open, a pizza place next door.

About 15 minutes after our arrival, an older gentleman shows up with a basket of clothes to dry. We exchange friendly greetings.

Once the clothes are in the dryers, we walk across the bridge to a coffee shop. We wouldn’t want to hog the jumbo-thon washers while we’re drinking hot beverages. The Wash ’n Wire Laundromat has two long rows of dryers on one wall, and besides there’s hardly anyone else here on a Sunday morning.