I kind of love Mondays. As much as I adore the weekends, it's a lovely moment when everyone is off to school and work, the house is quiet, and I start trying to conjure order in our weekend-blitzed house.
Usually, this means laundry: gathering, sorting, loading, unloading, folding. That makes it sounds so busy, so work intensive, doesn't it? But my great grandmother Elsie's laundry day was exponentially more taxing. With 9 daughters, a husband, and herself in one household, her laundry piles must have been massive. She soaked, scrubbed, twisted, wrung, and ironed at least 45 dresses and dozens of underclothes, sheets, towels, etc. Hers, no doubt, was a very active and exhausting laundry day.
This morning as I waited (waited! luxurious extra time!) for the washing machine to do its thing, I came across this TED clip by the marvelous Hans Rosling (one of my personal heroes: co-founder of Doctors without Borders Sweden and Gapminder, public health guru, and no one makes data more clear--I salute you, Hans!).
We do take it for granted but I think Rosling's right: this was a game changer for women. Let's hear it for all the books read, children played with, and interests pursued while the magical washing machine chugged away.
Folding these mounds of clean clothes doesn't seem like such a drag today, you know?