Peppermint tea, laundry and coughing

My washing machine doesn’t heat the water itself. The element blew. So I plumbed it into the hot water, and you run the temperature by adjusting the water temperature on the boiler. It’s one of the many workarounds that I’ve become an expert in over the years that my income has been … unpredictable. It’s been like that for ages, and it’s fine as long as you don’t try to tumble-dry anything in which case it just rolls your clothes around a cold barrel for hours. But it’s a workable system. Until your hot water conks out. Like it has.

We haven’t been able to get the stain of Pickle’s dirty protest out of the duvet. We both have a backlog of washing. With no dryer you have to hang it around the flat, and with no heat in the flat it takes days to dry fully. It was getting unmanageable. Jack came round the other night and commented that there was a clothes mountain on my bedroom floor. He tasked me with sorting it out. That’s something I can do while I’m sick. Sort clothes.

Brian and I splashed out and got an app to do our laundry. Someone will come round with a van. We will give him loads of bags. It will all come back washed. It’s like expensive magic. You can even send dry cleaning. And first time users get 25% off which would be amazing if it wasn’t aimed at City workers – “workwear deal – 10 suits and 10 collared shirts”… Still, with 25% off, it’s about right. I sent my 3 piece and my restaurant suit and bags of laundry meticulously weighed by luggage scale. It’s exactly the sort of thing I shouldn’t be doing when Dean the plumber is about to prance off with a grand. But I’ve got an important meeting coming up a week on Tuesday and I want to come at it looking and feeling good. My 3 piece will help. Socks and pants that I’ve only worn once will augment. Trousers and shirts without toothpaste stains will seal the deal. This way I get all the clothes out of my bedroom mountain, and then while the magic people do the washing I can make sure my room is ready to receive them. Then I can get them all back, smash all the meetings, sleep in lovely sheets and generally win at clothes. Rather than wear exactly the same shirt and jumper combo for over a week, like I did in the final week of Carol, knowing that even if anyone noticed they wouldn’t comment.

I’ve picked up this hacking cough from somewhere. Probably being cold all the time and wearing filthy shirts. Rather than go out and do expensive things in the cold I’m staying home, eating well and keeping as warm as I can. So as I write I’m making peppermint tea while a dry-January version of Tristan shoots Stormtroopers in the living room. This weekend is pointedly quiet and cheap. That might be the shape of things for the next few weeks. Although damn I’d still like to get to LA even just for a couple of weeks in February to build on last year. And get some sun. But first let’s see what the universe brings once the boiler is fixed.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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