Crimean time


While living within America, it was very easy to find a nearby "Laundromat" to wash and dry my clothes. The washing machines were the large commercial type, and would hold up to seven pair of pants, and a few pairs of socks, with ample room to spare. Washing would take about 30 minutes, and drying another 30 to 45 minutes. I could arrive at The Laundromat with my laundry basket, soap, bleach, and fabric softener, and be out with warm, fresh folded clothing within 2 hours and 15 minutes!!! Yes, I did the folding, and put my "no-iron" shirts on hangers.

Having a "stackable" washer and dryer at my apartment in Dallas, Texas was a real treat, because I didn't have to venture outside to The Laundromat, if the weather was cold, or rainy. My small washer would hold 3 pairs of pants and several pair of socks. Washing took 30 minutes, and drying an additional 50 to 55 minutes. If I was totally out of clothes, then I could do a “load of laundry” and have fresh clothing to wear within less than 2 hours, as I showered, shaved, and prepared my breakfast.

Living in Simferopol and washing clothes, sheets, and pillowcases is just a bit of a culture shock!!! Yes, I have a washing machine at my new Gorgeous Apartment, even more high-tech, than the washing machine at "My Apartment from Hell!!!" Apparently, there is some sort of a demand within The Ukraine to have automatic washing machines duplicate the necessary time of hand washing clothing within a river, stream, lavatory, or bathtub, before they are truly clean!!!

My automatic washing machine takes just a little over 2 hours to wash my clothes, and I have never seen so many different "settings" on such a teeny-tiny washing machine before I arrived in The Crimea!!! The washing machine is a "side load" and has a small basket to hold two pair of pants, and two pair of socks at the very most. I’m only 6’2” and weigh 210 pounds, and I can’t imagine how “anyone” bigger than myself could ever use one of these washing machines!!! The Machine has 18 different lights "activated" and glowing during an over 2-hour washing cycle. Programming the computer on this machine must have taken several computer gurus the better part of a year to accomplish.

There must be only “one” Automatic Clothes Dryer in all of The Crimea, and whenever I venture into an Appliance Store, I’ll look for a Dryer. There are none!!! The family who owns the one and only Clothes Dryer in all of The Crimea is perhaps a “must visit” location for any of the Guided Tours in this Region!!! Therefore, since I cannot find a Clothes Dryer, I must resort to hanging my clothes on the three heating units within my apartment, or hang my clothes outside my balcony upon the handy 3’ x 6’ clothesline.(I suppose I’ll have to find another place to hide my damp clothing, whenever I have visitors!!!) (Tonight, I have surprise vistors arriving, and I have freshly washed, damp underwear, scattered throughout the apartment, on the three hearing units, from the Kitchen to the Living Room!!! Now, why couldn’t I have washed pants and shirts last night???)

Damp Bed Sheets will not fit too well on any of my heating units, and I must hang these larger items outside my balcony windows, while they are flapping, and dancing within our average 15 mile per hour trade winds. I suppose this is all well and good within the Summer Time, however I fail to see how these bed sheets could “ever” dry in Winter Time. Just the other day, in mid January, I washed my bed sheets, and then hung them outside to dry. I am somewhat of a klutz, and I feared dropping my clean sheets over 5 stories to the muddy ground below my balcony. Even with the freezing winds of 29 degrees, I somehow managed to adhere the bed sheets to the clothesline with bright yellow, red, and green clothespins.

Then it started Snowing!!! There is something very charming and heartwarming about taking air fresh, sun kissed clothing from the clothesline during the Summer, however I wondered if my “snow kissed” bed sheets would eventually be dry around April, or May!!!

Joe K. Roberts

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