I’ve aired my dirty laundry for about 6 years now. Well, actually it’s clean laundry and I air-dry it on either a drying rack or clothesline! Being a “slow dryer” as it were, I often feel as though my whole life is consumed by laundry. Either washing it, hanging it, waiting it for it to dry, and putting it way. Wash, rinse, repeat. It is a rhythm that slowly weaves its way in and out of my days.
Outdoor drying becomes a huge issue when you live in the Pacific Northwest. Especially in the fall, winter, and much of the spring. My indoor drying racks are in constant use during these times. Once in a great while I dare to hang laundry outdoors in the depths of winter, but it is almost always to no avail – little or no actual drying gets accomplished.
This winter and spring have been especially rough on Seattle-area air drying enthusiasts. Out of the 132 days since January 1, only 27 days have NOT been rainy! I may not be that great at math, but I know that it means there have been 105 rainy days. No wonder I haven’t used my outdoor clothesline much!
Yesterday and today have been sunny though (knock on wood). Add temps in the 60s, a brisk breeze, and you’ve got ideal conditions for successful solar-powered drying. In fact, the laundry is dancing out on my backyard clothesline as I write this. When you become a consistent air-dryer, nothing brings satisfaction to your soul quite like seeing laundry flap in the wind. And the resulting intoxicating scent of outdoor dried laundry that is beyond compare. I love that Mother Nature does her work so wonderfully and bonus, for free!
Those of you who already air-dry know what I’m talking about; and those of you who don’t, I invite you to at least try it. It does take a bit more patience and waiting. But when you let nature do the work in its gentle way, you are in for a great experience. E. B. White says it well: “We should all do what, in the long run, gives us joy, even if it’s only picking grapes or sorting the laundry.”