It is 1:40am, I am folding my son's clothes when out of the blue I remembered that I had an article that I was planning to submit to Philippine Daily Inquirer's Youngblood.I wrote this ages ago. I know I am over the age limit now (limit is 29 years old) so I decided I would publish it in my blog instead. I can't exactly recall why I didn't submit it in the first place, I think it was too short, topic is not that relevant or maybe I just made up excuses because I was just scared of rejection and did not muster enough courage. Now I am not overflowing with self confidence or courage but I have accepted and embraced the fact that one of of the gifts God gave me is writing and that I should mold it and be the best writer that I can be.
Without further ado, here's my article:
Thesmell of detergent often gets me nostalgic. It would remind me of my workingdays in Laguna. I had my first taste of independence when I got off college. Igot a job in Sta. Rosa,Laguna. It is a hundred miles away from Davao city.
Living on my own has presented somedifficulties. Among others were doing household chores like cooking andlaundry. I completely gave up on cooking and limited myself to the oven toasterand pouring hot water to the instant noodles or cereals. I relied on fast foodoutlets and local carinderias.Laundry, well it was something I learned myself. I know the basics from Home Economicsin Elementary and from washing my Barbie dolls clothes when I was a kid. Iwasn’t completely helpless when it comes to washing clothes even without thewashing machine.
I know that you need a large basin. Then youfill it with water and immerse all the dirty clothes but of course you have toseparate the colored ones from the whites. Then you use detergent soap bar or powder. Iprefer the powder because you just have to sprinkle it generously over the immersedclothes. Then the tedious task of kneading and twisting the clothes comes in. There’sno general rule, you just knead to your heart’s content. When I feel lazy sometimesI would use my feet and stomp all over the clothes immersed in the basin. WhenI get really really lazy I would deliver the clothes to the nearest laundryshop. After rubbing you then rinse the soapy clothes. At first I thought it wasokay to rinse it once but then I noticed that my white shirts turned yellowishafter they dried. My housemate told me that I have to get all the detergent offthe clothes. So I rinsed it thrice or even a fourth when I still see a fewbubbles on the water. Getting stains off is another story so I would really beextra careful not to dirty my clothes too much.
Myhousemates would often raise their eyebrow every time I would get ready to washmy clothes on Sunday morning. They would tell me to just send it to the nearest laundry shop asthey do. I would just smile and say that I’m saving up money. They didn't knowthat doing the laundry has become therapeutic for me. It has become my time alone with my thoughts. Ifeel good doing something for myself. I feel so independent and grown up takingcare of myself. Mostly doing the laundry helps me wash away the tides ofhomesickness because I know that every Sunday morning a hundred miles from me, mymother is doing the same thing and most probably thinking of me as I wasthinking of her amidst the grime and the bubbles. In that simple household task, one way or another,despite the distance... I am spending time with her.