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.