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Urban Survivor How It All Began

It all started when the laundry had piled up and the washing machine decided to take a break, as in break down. To make things more challenging, it was Friday of a major holiday weekend. Even if we could get a repair service on such short notice we would probably end up paying enough in overtime charges to buy a new washer.

Not one to be easily fazed, Brian thought How hard could it be to wash a load of clothes? Harder than he thought.

I filled the sunken Jacuzzi bathtub in the master bathroom with warm water and dumped in a half cup detergent and a cup of bleach.

I tossed in a load of underwear, socks and towels — basic necessities first — and turned on the Jacuzzi. In theory, the jets would push around the clothes and get them clean. In practice, several socks were immediately swallowed by the intake valves. So now, not only were we facing washing machine repairs but a visit by a plumber as well.

Not to worry. Ever the resourceful one, Brian came to the rescue by fishing out the socks with a skewer from his grilling tool box.

I decided that stomping on the clothes, much like the old-fashioned method of stomping grapes to make wine would work. And it did, until my thigh muscles gave out and Brian took over high-stepping his way among the clothes.

Wringing out the socks, underwear, and washcloths was a breeze. The bath towels — not so much. Rinsing meant putting the wet clothes in a bucket, refilling the tub, more stomping and wringing. It took almost 70 minutes to wash one average-sized load and there were four more to go. So much for our holiday.

Hefting the wet clothes up to the deck to dry brought new meaning to the phrase, “going for the burn.” We couldn’t toss the wet clothes into the dryer because they would take forever to dry.

And then it struck me. We could blog about this and then get a book contract.

I turned to Brian. “We could write a book about this.”

“Washing underwear?”

“No. Going green.”

Brian frowned. “I prefer my socks white, thank you very much.”

“What I meant was a book about if it’s possible to carry on a normal life as we give up one convenience at a time. Say we go without a washing machine for two weeks. Could we do it? Then when we start using the washer again, we give up the dryer, then the cooktop and so forth.”

And that’s how this all began. Welcome to the Urban Survivor Guide.

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Name: bhanddp

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