Tragedy struck just before Christmas 2007.
No ... not talking about my car accident. That WAS tragic but I'm referring to the death of a washing machine.
MY washing machine. The one that I had purchased 10 years earlier when I had moved into this little house. It had been faithful and then it was dead.
Atleast the dryer still works.
So, I began the task of loading up the laundry every week ... or more ... and heading out to the laundromat to wash the clothes. There's one that is less than a mile from my house and it is in a nicely lit area, clean and run by an older gentleman that doesn't say much but is always friendly.
I also began the task of saving up my pennies to purchase a new one.
Let's face it. Taking the laundry away from the house is not the greatest of fun.
After *mumblemumble* years of living in apartment complexes and carting the laundry basket across parking lots, down to basements, around to offices, my joy was extreme when upon moving to Tulsa all those years ago, I found an apartment that actually had the washer and dryer in the apartment. Not just the hook up. The actual machines.
I vowed then and there that I wouldn't be one to ever not have a "laundry room" again. Kept that vow for many years.
Until the darn washing machine decided that while the water could go in and the water could go out, if I wanted the clothes to be washed, I had to move that agitator in the middle by myself.
Yes. Because that was going to happen.
Nope ... washing machine was placed to the top of the list of things that I really, really, REALLY want to own, moving to a spot even higher than an HD television and DVR. There are some basic priorities. However, my priorities must be a bit off, because here I am, one year and 9 months later and I still am taking the laundry to the laundry mat ever 10 days to two weeks. (I bought more lingerie - that gives me atleast 14 days before I get desperate - I'm not completely stupid.)
I will admit. I have actually had the possibility of purchasing a washer 3 times since it died. Yep. Three times I have literally had in my hot little hand the amount of money necessary to purchase a machine that could live inside my house and wash my clothes, never having to load them into their respective bags and into the car and out to the laundromat in the rain, the sleet, the snow, the ice, the humidity, the heat, the wind ... well ... you get the picture.
So, why am I still wandering out into the dark of night to take my clothing to the public place where a variety of humanity gather to do this thing called laundry?
Because the President will not make it a federal law that nudity should be instituted nationwide.
Um. No ... that's not true. Just a pipe dream when it's late, I'm tired, and I don't want to but I've washed and rinsed in the sink for three nights and now, in addition to being out of lingerie, I'm also out of outerwear. For some reason my manager refuses to accept my pitiful "should only be seen in the darkness of my own home" clothing as actual "Business Casual". I'm thinking narrow-minded, but then ... she's probably right.
No, the three times were judgement calls ... I had the money ... I could have been responsible ... but I wasn't ... yet, I can't say that they were irresponsible because the three items I received I could not have gotten at any other time and because of them, my life has been filled with much joy, contentment, and happiness.
First ... the washing machine money was used to make my original ticket purchase to my first, and likely only, Supernatural Convention. While the trip morphed into something completely different than originally planned, it would not have occured at all if not for that stash of cash that I had saved and I would not have had a roadtrip week filled with such fun, culminating in the pleasure of squeeing like a little fangirl and having the opportunity to hug and put faces to some special people who have become such special friends.
Nope. That judgement call brought much joy and wouldn't be traded for anything, washing machine included.
Second ... the washing machine money was used last Christmas in a time of financial tightness to allow me to do two things - enjoy being the giver at Christmas, something I truly love and usually am able to do the way I plan, as well as paying up all of my bills and starting the new year off without struggling to find a way to make ends meet. It's not very glamorous but it was a wonderful feeling to start the new year without worrying about the rent and utilities.
Nope. That judgement call brought too much contentment to ever be considered less important than the ease a washing machine would bring.
Third ... the washing machine money was gathered earlier this summer and I actually went and looked at a couple to see about the possibility. Then a dream became achievable and all thoughts of washing machines went completely out of my head and into my house came a small 4.5 pound ball of white fluff I named Chester. He's grown a bit more in the two months I've had him. He is now up to 5.5 lbs and is a bit bigger than the minute size he used to be. He has also discovered a love of going bye-bye, has an extremely aggressive foot fettish at times (he'll actually work to remove both shoes and socks so he can lick and nibble toes and ankles), will fly through the house playing Superman with any piece of paper or magazine he can possibly get hold of, and believes that toilet paper is an actual food group. He also licks my face and gives me kisses, nestles between my legs as we sleep, crawls onto my head and whimpers during a thunder/lightning storm, and has the sweetest way of rubbing his eyes and head awake with his paws when the alarm goes off in the morning. He delights my heart when he begs me to pick him up upon arriving home and he fills a wonderful spot that keeps my house from being empty.
Nope. That judgement call was the best one yet for it has brought me great happiness - even as I sit here writing and watch him dash through the living room with a trail of toilet paper streaming from the bathroom behind him.
So, my savings priority remains to gather enough pennies to purchase a washing machine. I'm not worried. I know that it will happen when the time is right. Sometimes you just have to look at the bigger picture of what is more important. For me it was the joy of a once in a lifetime trip, the contentment of ending a year with a fun Christmas and beginning a year without stress, and the happiness found in a small, furry companion who laughs at me, drives me crazy, and most of all depends on me to be responsible for his safety and welfare while at the same time giving me complete and utter devotion.
Meanwhile, I am still loading up my bags and heading out to the laundromat every once in a while ... meeting the most entertaining and interesting people imaginable.
But that's for another time. Right now someone is advising me he wants to play ... and I am remembering that even though it's washed, it still has to be dried, folded and put away. And since I'm home, I'd best get to that.