It’s Monday and I’m sitting at my PC thinking I might put a load of laundry in the washer sometime today. This is not my mother’s Monday, but I remember. And I’m so very glad we haven’t had a clothesline for many years. It’s been about that long since I owned a clothespin. And I never used a wringer washing machine. Thank goodness!
But in days long gone by, I was very familiar with clotheslines, clothespins, and the wringer washing machine and tubs Mama set up early Monday morning.
I think soaking Daddy’s work clothes in gasoline might have been the first step. I’m not sure what came next because I went out to play about this time. I remember the smell of bleach, bluing, and starch. I only remember bits and pieces of Mama’s Monday until the wash was hanging on the line.
I knew better than to run through the sheets (one spanking later), but it was okay to play between the rows of laundry hanging on the line. We had three lines that stretched across the backyard. Dry laundry was removed and replaced with wet laundry as the day went on. In the Oklahoma wind, drying didn’t take long and everything smelled fresh as a spring breeze. (Mondays in winter didn’t leave pleasant memories but frozen laundry dries.)
If a cloud came up… We hurried out to snatch the clothes off the line. Sometimes we were successful in gathering it all in before the first raindrops fell, other times, not.
On a sunny day, when I was old enough to reach the line and put the freshly dried laundry in the basket without dragging it on the ground, “gathering in the clothes” was my job.
It would seem that the “gathered in” laundry was ready to fold by today’s standards. Not so back then. Everything washable was 100% cotton. Mama folded the sheets and towels but the rest had to be prepared for Tuesday. Ironing day. I’m leaving you there, and going back to my computer… I do own an iron and ironing board. One item is in the garage and the other is on a shelf, very high up and out of sight. I do not do Mama’s Monday, or Tuesday, I love today’s fabrics and modern conveniences!