Went to see a friend today. When I walked into an apartment, there were all these young, teenage to twenty-something people around (her children). "Wow", - I said - "it looks like a dorm!" I didn't see the father of the family right away, he sat at the desk behind the potted plants. Since the family is so big, the planning of the space was quite ingenious. The mother, Doris, was putting the laundry together. She already had a cart with a few full bags of dirty clothes, and now she was trying to figure out, what she forgot.
- "Oh, mom, I'll need a clean shirt for tonight".
- "Where is it?"
- "In my drawer."
The kid, who was not a kid anymore, but a young man with long hair and a mustache, didn't move a finger to get his shirt. Mom went and got it from his room.
I don't know, if you have a similar system where you live. Here, in most of the apartment buildings, there is a common laundry room where the tenants pay to use the washing machines and dryers. We took the cart and other stuff to the first floor on the elevator. Then there were about ten steep steps down that we needed to pass. The father came and lugged the cart down the steps. The children stood on the top floor and watched how he did it.
I went to meet with Doris, because she is a great driving teacher. My son, Sonny, is trying to get a Driver's Licence. Its funny, Doris's husband's name is also Sonny. We two get often confused about what the other one is talking about!
As usual, when the two of us get together, we cover a million topics, from the children and their bad habits to husbands and their bad habits to other friends and ... You've got the idea!
Today, I tried to impress upon her that she needs to get the children, who were not children anymore, to help her. It looked ridiculous, when she was going bonkers working her tail off and they were just watching her impassively.
The mom and I did laundry. I knew, that Doris had an appointment at 1:30, but she didn't seem to hurry. At the end, though, she began to frantically take the clothes out of the dryers and fold them.
-"You'll be late, tell your family to finish the laundry!" - I said.
- "Yes, but they will lose things and won't fold them, and everything will get wrinkled!" - was her reply.
She called to the apartment from my phone and told her husband and the brood that she was leaving. She still grabbed the cart with the freshly washed stuff and began to pull it upstairs.
"Wait,' - I wailed - "Let me help you!"
Together we pulled and pushed the stubborn vehicle up the steps. A young man was standing behind us, watching us placidly. The look on Doris's face was frightening, because she desperately wanted to be on time for the appointment, but couldn't dare to leave the laundry in the hands of her family. She almost pulled me to the concrete steps, when I pleaded with the neighbor: "Help!"
He didn't get to do that. With the last vestiges of her strength, she managed to get the cart up to the elevator level. There we said goodbye. I was afraid to say something that I would later regret. She does need help!