Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wash Day – Everyday - even if the sun "don’t shine"

OK, check it out my blue wash bucket and a 2 liter empty water bottle for a plunger, and a packet of washing soap.

Side of My Bathroom Scene

Drawing water from the faucet is the only easy part. All the rest is back breaking. Add washing soap, stir with plunger, make sure your sleeves are pulled up and you’ve taken off your gloves. Needless to say, bare feet and cuffs rolled up is de reigeur.
Continue to fill with water, ice cold usually, then add 3 medium items, or 5 small, or one large. Let soak overnight, don’t forget to plunge occasionally. Pray for sun tomorrow. Next morning, or next day or whenever time allows, rinse, rinse, rinse. This means tilting the bucket towards the floor and in the direction of the drain. I have devised a system where I use my water bottle plunger to rest the bucket not having to hold the bucket as it drains and break my bleepin back.
Now for the really fun part: wring, wring, wring. Finally shake and hang over something - anything where the sun will shine. Don't forget to turn during the day, and bring in before sundown.

I was able to purchase washing soap in very small packets; like the size of a zip lock bag. It helps because wearing clothes for several days, WHICH I DO, necessitates a good washing.

No one has washing machines; not even the early types our mothers were familiar with. I have never seen a washboard, just clothes, buckets, rocks and drying space.The entire country often appears as one big clothes line.

 Side of the Road Scene

Side of the River Scene

Side of a House Scene

Monastery Rooftop Scene
( young monk just returned from the river with heavy, wet, clean robes))

In Nepal there is a modest amount of electricity in the home and more often no running water thus the public tap. Washing is done in plain view and the river is a second to the street faucet. I have seen women and men washing in the river at the height of the afternoon sun, removing clothes from under and over creating a modicum of privacy while cleaning their bodies.

Daily Life Scene

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