Blog action day: hanging out the laundry

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Leggi questo post in: Italiano

quite often i catch myself complaining about this or that in everyday Italian life. why is it so hard to get things done?! why is everyone so closed to new and “different” ideas?! etc etc. but then every so often there are those moments that i think, thank goodness i live in this country and not in the united states anymore! and one of those moments is laundry time.

here in italy, it’s absolutely normal to hang laundry outside the windows and balconies. if you don’t do that, it takes up too much space to hang them inside. and who has a dryer? nobody that I know, that’s for sure. for me, the typical american way of thinking about laundry is ridiculous, so i decided to write about it for blog action day 2009, when all blogs who’ve signed up should write about climate change.

i recently read an article in the New York Times about the great debate, not on health care reform or all the issues of the economy, but about many residential communities in the USA which forbid residents to hang their clothes out to dry.

what?! but why in the world shouldn’t they be allowed to hang out their clothes?! because in this day and age, anyone who has a washer also has a dryer and very few people still hang out clothes to dry. and when someone decides to do so, because he doesn’t have the money for a dryer or for ecological reasons, it’s seen as an “eyesore.” it ruins the view of the community. one man said that communities make these rules so that when residents look out their windows they can see birds, flowers and trees, not their neighbors’ laundry. another very charming man apparently shot and killed his neighbor because he was sick and tired of telling him to quit hanging out his clothes.

luckily, some of the more enlightened states are starting to protect those who want to protect the environment. after all, dryer use accounts for 6% of all household electricity consumption. there are new laws in some states prohibiting residential community rules not allowing laundry to be hung outside. thank goodness! and in any case, who says that laundry hanging outside has to be ugly? naples, my adoptive city, is famous for its alleyways with laundry stretching from one side to the other. and i, and many others, find it beautiful.

neapolitan laundry pictures thanks to: Ruth Burke, Scrivo Napoli, e Getty Images.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. ANCHE IO trovo che il bucato a napoli abbia un fascino incredibile,ma per certi versi non sono d'accordo.ho i miei vicini in lotta da 2 anni:uno se ne infischia del regolamento condominiale e stende le lenzuola fuori dal balcone,e l'altro per entrare in casa sua le deve scansare da davanti al portone.credo che ci voglia misura in tutto.io non ho l'asciugatrice,uso lo stendino e lo metto nella mia terrazza.sui balconi ci tengo i fiori,non i panni…e dirò che ho avuto problemi coi vicini anche per via dell'acqua caduta dai vasi…

  2. d'accordo, ci vuole sicuramente il rispetto per gli altri. infatti, quando stendo io le lenzuola dal balcone, le piego in modo che non da fastidio a chi c'è al piano di sotto. e per le piante sul balcone, sono anche molto attenta a non inaffiare troppo e di avere sempre il sottovaso in modo di non allagare i vicini sotto. ma sinceramente, non vedo perché ci dovrebbero essere regolamenti condominiali riguardo la stesura del bucato, basta che tutti pensano a non dare fastidio agli altri, ma come si fa per altre cose, tipo di non spostare i mobili a mezzanotte o di non ascoltare la musica molto alta. è la mancanza di rispetto per gli altri che è un problema.

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