Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Doing Laundry in the Lap of Luxury

1.  Make sure the water is on.  You will not have enough reserve water to do laundry.  If you are on a water schedule (6:00 AM to 11:00 AM and 6:00 PM to 11:00 PM during the week and 6:00 AM 10 11:00 PM on the weekends), be sure to start and finish your laundry during the designated hours.  If the water turns off while the clothes are soaking, you will just have to leave them there until the water turns back on.

2.  If you do not have a hot water heater, or a kulunka, you will have to boil water to do your laundry.  Fill the largest pot you have and put it on the stove for around 30 minutes.  If you are lucky enough to have hot water, you will only need to light the kulunka or make sure your electric hot water heater is working before proceeding on to step 3.

3.  Take a laundry bucket and place it in the bathtub.  For large loads, you'll want to use a big, plastic laundry tub that takes up half of the bathtub.  For smaller loads, just use a large, metal bowl.

4.  Put detergent in the bottom of your tub of choice.  Add hot water (either from the faucet or the stove).

5.  Add clothes and swish around a bit.

6.  Leave the clothes to soak for at least an hour.

7.  Remove the clothes, rinsing them with clean water as you go.  If you have hot water, you may do this with any temperature water that comes out of your faucet.  If you do not have hot water, be warned -- the rinsing water gets numbingly cold very quickly, but it is not economical to heat up the rinsing water.  It takes too long to heat up too little water.  You may want to take breaks if you can't feel your hands anymore.  Be sure to ring out the excess water.


8.  Hang the clothes on the line on the balcony, rain or shine.  For special winter laundering instructions, please see number 10.

9.  Remove the clothes when dry.


10.  SPECIAL WINTER INSTRUCTIONS:  If you have an apartment heated by radiators, you will want to use them to your full advantage.  Drape as many wet clothes as you can across the radiators in a single layer.  Hang the remaining clothes outside.  Periodically check on the inside clothes, rotating their positions as some parts dry.  Remove each item when completely dry and replace with outdoor clothes, which will most likely, at this point, be frozen solid.  Continue the rotation until all of your clothes have thawed and dried.

It's a stickup!

 They're standing on their own!

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