Saturday night. 9:30 p.m. I just started the washing machine on a hot water cycle, no clothes, lots of bleach. Why? Oh, friend, take a seat…
After a long day working in the garden, Andrew and I cleaned up to go out to dinner. Around 7:15 p.m., right before leaving home, I remembered I desperately needed to start a load of laundry if I wanted to wear clean clothes to church in the morning. I started the laundry. We went to dinner at our favorite Thai restaurant. Andrew kept his dish mild, while I requested the medium heat. We talked about our day. We talked about our friends. We talked about tomorrow, and Andrew suggested that perhaps I was unnecessarily stressed this week. On the way home, we stopped for sorbet.
But all this is irrelevant to the bleach in the washing machine.
When we returned home, I remembered that I needed to put my clothes in the dryer. I began pulling the clothes out of the washing machine, a few pieces at a time, shaking them gently to avoid wrinkles. As I neared the bottom of the washer–only a few socks (no matches) remained–I saw something at the bottom of the drum, partially hidden by the agitator (I just Googled, “washing machine diagram” to learn the technical names.)
Is that a…? No. No way. Catherine, you are being neurotic. It’s just a big wad of lint. With a tail…
“Can you please come here?”
“I think… there’s a mouse…a dead mouse…in the washing machine.”
Oh yes, indeed there was. I considered not writing about this because it is So. Gross., but figured the story was worth it. We have no idea how it got in the house, much less the washing machine. The best guess we have is that it came in through the garage, which opens right by the door to the laundry room. We had been keeping a double-bagged bag of bird seed in the laundry room because when we had it in the garage, a mouse broke into it. We checked the bag, and it had (recently) been chewed, so we think the mouse must have smelled it and sneaked in while we were working in the garden with the door open. Gross, gross, gross.
So now, 10:08 p.m., I put my wet, took-a-bath-with-a-dead-mouse clothes back in the washing machine, shaking each item individually, intentionally–just in case. Just in freaking case.
I will not wear dirty clothes to church tomorrow; they will be squeaky clean.
(Squeaky clean?? I can’t believe I said that. Great word play, horrifying mental image. I’m so sorry. I might wear dirty clothes tomorrow.)