Trailer Park Nirvana image created by Stefany Kleeschulte.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Florence and the [Washing] Machine

Has someone ever done you a favor but they did it wrong or not to your liking but you couldn't really say anything because they were being nice so you had to hold your tongue?

One weekend I was camping with my girlfriends (the Kamp Kittens who, when it was winter, morphed into the Kraft Kittens) and I was feeling cranky (or was that kranky?). I probably should've stayed home but I decided to be social and go. Our first morning I wanted to sleep in and be left alone but one of the women came over to my tent and presented me with a cup of coffee. How nice of her, right? But she'd put cream in my coffee and I like it black. I was polite and thanked her but all day I mumbled why the hell did she put milk in my coffee? doesn't she know how i like my coffee? why would someone do that? 

A friend of ours was dying only we didn't know it at the time. I mean, she was in her 30s so how could that be? She was single and so us women friends did what we could to take care of her. One time when she was in the hospital one of the women did her laundry and brought her bras, panties, t-shirts, things like that. The woman in the hospital bed wasn't as nice as I'd been about the coffee. "The next time you do my laundry could you please use unscented detergent?" Or she'd reprimand us because we brought the wrong underwear. When we cleaned her apartment, we had remembered to recycle, right?

The night of the wife beating I'd grabbed the only blanket I had (outside of the comforter on my bed) to throw around my friend as she hunkered down in the dirt under my trailer. Later I put it around the shoulders of one of the bear spray sprayed men. I'd given away all my other blankets during a cold spell last year including my one and only sleeping bag. This blanket had been given to me by my realtor when I moved into my house - a pretty off-white Pendleton throw. It was one of the few household items I brought with me when I left Portland.

I didn't expect to see that throw again or if I did, I figured it would be a mess - a mixture of dirt, blood and bear spray. When I got home from Tucson the blanket was on my picnic table. It was clean. It was felted. It was shrunken down to half its size. Flo, God bless her, had washed it. A 100% wool throw thrown in the washing machine. Didn't she know not to do that? Had it reappeared I probably would've bagged it up and waited for my next trip to Tucson to have it dry-cleaned. But how could I say anything? So when Flo came over I thanked her profusely.

I may give the throw another wash and then dry it in Demo's dryer to thoroughly felt it. Maybe I'll make it into...uh, what? A purse? A door mat? A bed for the cat? A pillow cover? Could I needlepoint it? Hang shells from it? Hey, Kraft Kittens, got any ideas?

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